Kicking off the evening was the inaugural presentation of the Outstanding Contribution to British Agriculture award, which was given to Lord Henry Plumb.
Upon the announcement, he received rapturous applause from the audience for his achievements and influence on British agriculture and politics, which has spanned a 76-year farming career.
At 15, at the start of the Second World War, Henry was taken out of school by his father to temporarily help on the farm after their farmworkers were called to the army – but never returned.
What followed is a remarkable journey which has seen him rising through the ranks to become a member of the House of Lords for 25 years, the longest serving NFU President of nine years and president of the National Federation of Young Farmers Clubs to name just a few.
He was elected MEP for the Cotswolds in 1979 and became chairman of its agriculture committee. Several other chairmanships followed until he became president of the European Parliament itself in 1987, the first and only Briton to hold the post.
In 2013, Henry launched the Henry Plumb Foundation to help young people realise their dreams of pursuing a career in agriculture.
With a team of mentors behind him, the Trust has contributed £88,000 to young farmers who have applied for bursaries to help fund a wide variety of projects.
Celebrating his 90th birthday earlier this year with his wife Majorie, three children and 16 great grandchildren, he continues to farm his pedigree Longhorns at Coleshill, Warwickshire, as well as remaining active in the House of Lords and within his Foundation.