Peter Hetherington, left, receives the Blamire Medal awarded earlier
year to his father John from chairman of the Blamire trustees Michael
The prestigious Blamire Medal, which earlier this year was awarded
to former Harrison & Hetherington chairman the late John Hetherington
has been presented to his son Peter.
Mr Hetherington, who was chairman from 1988 to 1994 during agriculture’s ‘golden’ years
when up to 1,500 prime cattle a week would pass through the ring
at Borderway Mart, Carlisle, was also the youngest agricultural
college principal when he was appointed principal of Kirkley Hall
College, Northumberland, at the age of 27 in the 1950s.
Receiving the award for services to agriculture in the old county
area of Cumberland was Mr Hetherington’s son Peter, who now
runs Greenquarries, Rosley, near Wigton, where John took up the
new challenge of farming after 16 years as the college’s
Welsh-born Mr Hetherington from Cumbrian stock, moved to Penrith
where he attended Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, leaving at the
age of 14 without any qualifications.
However he returned to full time education at Kings College Newcastle
gaining a National Diploma in Agriculture, and later a first class
honours degree in agriculture at the University of Durham.
At 25 he became vice-principal of Newton Rigg College of Agriculture
and Forestry, Penrith two years later he was appointed principal
of Kirkley Hall.
It was at aged 40 that he decided to practice what he preached
and began farming the Church Commissioners’ holding Greenquarries,
initially running it as a mixed farm and latterly concentrating
While building up the business he still found time to be involved
in many other areas of the industry – for 15 years he was
a TV interviewer on topical farming issues and he was also a part-time
agricultural consultant for a national company.
A familiar figure at sheep sales across the north of England,
he was a director of Harrison & Hetherington for 12 years.
He worked closely with the North of England Mule Sheep Association
and was a past president.
Always keen to support other farmers, Mr Hetherington represented
tenant farmers on the Agricultural Land Tribunal. In 2002 he was
appointed to the panel which led enquiries into the disastrous
foot and mouth epidemic.
Mr Hetherington died in August this year, aged 79.
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