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Calling Rural Field Cadets

1949 RFC - Source

Rural Field Cadet (RFC) alumni attending Lincoln University’s 1938-1975 VFM ‘Final Field Test’ Reunion in April this year agreed that the story of the RFC scheme that brought them to Lincoln should be formally documented and written-up as it was a significant part of New Zealand’s agricultural history.

Bill Harrington (DipVFM 1959) and Monty Monteath (BAgSci 1962) have been given the task of making this happen.  Robyn Lewis, a Lincoln University postgraduate student of a few years ago, has located relevant archived material. She is an experienced researcher and interviewer and sees plenty of scope for publishing an interesting and comprehensive account of the RFC scheme. Her father and uncle were RFCs in the 1940s.

Bill and Monty are setting up a committee to organise and oversee the project. Its responsibilities will include defining and detailing the project; finding and working with an author; supporting Robyn in her research; establishing a budget and financial controls; and sourcing adequate funding.

Some ‘seeding finance’ will be needed for initial publicity and administration costs, and to assist Robyn to start the interviews with former cadets, record their stories, and get their views of the scheme and how it influenced their careers.   Bill and Monty are seeking donations in the order of $50 which, on eventual publication of the book, will be credited to a donor’s purchase price.   If you would like to be involved in this way – or any other way – please make contact using the details below. 

Forty-five RFCs met at the VFM reunion and unanimously agreed that ‘The Project’ will be led and owned by former RFCs and that it is a ‘now or never’ project.  Former RFCs (or their widows) who may be able to contribute information to The Project can communicate directly with Robyn, who would be grateful for copies of photographs, stories or other information, and willingness to be interviewed.   

For cash/kind contributions, please contact Bill. Other enquiries should be directed to Monty. Contact details are: 
Robyn: Phone (03) 9800 636; email robyn@rlewis.co.nz 
Bill: Phone (03) 337 3094; email woharrington@xtra.co.nz    
Monty: Phone (03) 347 7219  or  027 308 2009; email malmonteath@hotmail.com