More than 150 people attended the Nightcaps Young Farmers milestone 500th meeting last week.

Nightcaps is now one of the country's oldest NZ Young Farmers clubs. To mark the milestone, a special meeting and dinner was held at the Nightcaps Town Hall on February 9.

''We had about 130 people attend the dinner and a further 20 turned up once the band started,'' club member Justin Oostveen said.

''The formal meeting only took about 20 minutes to get through but we kept things moving to keep everyone interested.''

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The event was attended by current and former members, including Pam Bennett, who until the meeting was the club's only life member.

Southland log truck driver Pam Bennett joined the club when she was 15 years old, beginning her long association with the group.

''We used to hold our meetings in the old railway building at Nightcaps, before relocating to the Wreys Bush Hall, she said.

The former champion shearer and woolhandler was later elected the club's chairwoman.
Former member Ian Tippett spoke about his time in the club.

He joined in 1965 and was the first NZ Young Farmers member to go on an exchange to Australia, where he met his future wife Janet.

Willy Buchanan, Simon Greer and Hayden Peter were all honoured with life memberships.

Southern Rural Life