Turkey Club UK names Derek Kelly as its new patron

Traditional farm fresh turkey champion, Derek Kelly, was recently elected patron of the Turkey Club UK during the organisation’s annual meeting at Telford, Shropshire.

“It wasn’t difficult to accept the invitation to become patron,” said Mr Kelly, who follows the late Will Burdett MBE in the club role.

“My training was in animal genetics and I had a collection of nine rare breeds of turkeys until a commercial hatchery on site meant they were disbanded. I am therefore an inaugural member of the club.”

This is the second honour this year for Mr Kelly, who was presented with a lifetime achievement award from the Egg & Poultry Industry Conference (EPIC) during its 50th anniversary event at Newport, an award which took the form of a painting by East Anglian artist Libby Turner

Mr Kelly began breeding turkeys at Springate Farm, Danbury, in the 1970s after acquiring the former River Rest hatchery.  Today, Kelly Turkeys is one of the largest suppliers of poults for production of traditional Christmas turkeys as well as marketing the company’s KellyBronze turkey.

Headline image shows Derek Kelly (left) with EPIC’s Stephen Lister, pictured during the lifetime award presentation.

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