Nick Lane Fox
Chairman of Yorkshire Agricultural Society
The Society has long established links with the Lane Fox family, dating right back to the very start.
Official history notes show that GL Fox MP of Bramham Park was among founder members at the Society’s inaugural meeting in York in 1837 and various relatives have taken roles since then, including as President. Nick studied Agricultural Economics at Newcastle University, before joining the Army, where he served for 10 years, passing out top of the class at Sandhust and being selected for Staff College.
He then returned to his family’s agricultural estate at Bramham Park and began to prepare it for a new century. Nick contracted the in-hand farming and forestry, improved the Bramham Horse Trials and brought the Leeds Festival to the Estate. At this time Nick was also an executive director of investment managers Rensburg Sheppards plc.
He became a Horse Steward at the 1987 Great Yorkshire Show, until posted over-seas. He began stewarding again at the 1999 Show and took over as Chief Steward of the Main Ring for 2002. Nick was elected onto the Society’s Council in 2005, elected as a Trustee of the Society in 2009 and has sat on the Society’s Audit and Investment Committee since 2004. Nick succeeded John Brennan as Chairman of the Audit & Investment Committee in 2013.
York farmer Charles Mills was appointed as Honorary Show Director of the Great Yorkshire Show and its sister event, Countryside Live in 2015.
He farms at Woolas Grange, Appleton Roebuck which is a mixed arable rotation, with a 250 ewe flock as well as a small beef finishing enterprise.
Charles has held a number of roles within the Yorkshire Agricultural Society, including Joint Chief Cattle Steward and as a member of the Society’s Council, its governing body, since 2002.
He chairs the judging panel for the annual Tye Trophy Farming Awards which promotes farming excellence coupled with conservation practices.
Charles has played a significant role in the educational aspect of the Society’s work, serving on its Grants and Education Committee and running arable workshops at the free Countryside Days which attract 6,000 primary school children every year. He is also a member of the management committee of the Society’s Future Farmers of Yorkshire.
Chief Executive of the Yorkshire Agricultural Society
Nigel Pulling has been Chief Executive of the Yorkshire Agricultural Society since 2002, after joining as Head of Finance and Commercial Enterprises the previous year.
He recently received an Award of the Associateship of Royal Agricultural Societies (ARAgS) at the House of Lords for outstanding contribution to agriculture.
Nigel is responsible for the Society’s activities year round. Nigel is passionate about bringing farming together and was instrumental in planning the Society’s Regional Agricultural Centre which opened in June 2009. Nigel looks after the tenants of the RAC and the Society’s land and property portfolio as well as overseeing all financial matters.
Nigel heads up the Society’s work to raise awareness of farming and the countryside within the education sector, supporting the industry through grants and sponsorship as well as staging the Great Yorkshire Show, Countryside Live and Springtime Live.
MD of Yorkshire Event Centre & Deputy CEO of Yorkshire Agricultural Society
Heather Parry has worked for the Yorkshire Agricultural Society since 1993, initially as Marketing Manager and subsequently as Managing Director of the Society’s trading subsidiary company, Yorkshire Event Centre Ltd, alongside her role as Deputy Chief Executive of the YAS.
YEC Ltd hires out the Pavilions of Harrogate and the Yorkshire Event Centre for events. Heather was the mastermind behind building the Regional Agricultural Centre and Fodder.
This is the society’s HQ and home to Fodder, the only café food hall in the UK where 100% of profits go back to farmers through charity (Yorkshire Agricultural Society).
Most recently, Heather oversaw the £11 million development of Hall 1 of the Yorkshire Event Centre which scooped a national award within 12 months of opening.
Heather also launched the Harrogate Caravan Park in 2014 and all profits from these businesses, based on the showground, go to help fund the work of the registered charity, the Yorkshire Agricultural Society (YAS).
Heather is actively involved in Saint Michael’s Hospice, Harrogate. She had previously worked in Earls Court Exhibition Centre organising and marketing large events including, The Royal Smithfield Show and The Royal Tournament.
Sir William Worsley
President of the Yorkshire Agricultural Society
Sir William is the Chair of the Forestry Commission and the National Forest Company. He was the Government’s National Tree Champion from 2018 – 2020.
He is Lay Canon of York Minster and a member of the Chapter and Cathedral Council. He is Chairman of the Howardian Hills AONB Joint Advisory Committee and a former member of the North York Moors National Park Authority. He is on the Court of the Merchant Taylors Company in London, a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and a Fellow of the Royal Agricultural Societies. A Deputy Lieutenant of North Yorkshire and lives at Hovingham in North Yorkshire where he runs his family’s award winning estate. Formerly President of the CLA, former Chairman of the Scarborough Building Society, director of the Skipton Building Society and Honorary Colonel of the Yorkshire Squadron of the Queens Own Yeomanry.
President Elect of the Yorkshire Agricultural Society
Margaret has been Chief Cattle Steward at the Great Yorkshire Show since 2008, having become the first female Cattle Steward at the show in 1973. Margaret’s family has been part of the show for over 100 years as father Frank Chapman was an exhibitor and cattle steward and his uncle Joseph was showing Dairy Shorthorn Cattle in 1910. To celebrate the 150th show, Margaret introduced the Blythewood Pairs Competition in the Cattle Section to find the best matching pair of animals from each breed.