A performing arts student who dropped out of university to launch a career as a butcher found himself in the spotlight at the Royal Welsh Winter Fair in Builth Well on Monday.Sam Hughes, 22, from Brian Crane Butchers, Maesycwmmer, Caerphilly, proved himself to be top of the chops as he won the Welsh Young Butcher competition on his debut.Sam followed the morning competition by finishing joint third in the Welsh Pork Butcher contest, which was open to butchers of all ages, in the afternoon. The winner was Craig Holly, of Neil Powell Butchers, Abergavenny, with Kevin Aldred, Martin Players, Cardiff runner up and Clive Swan, Swans Farm Shop, Mold, joint third.“It was a bit nerve-wracking and my hands wouldn’t stop shaking for the first hour,” confessed Sam, an apprentice with Cambrian Training Company. “The second hour was much better and I couldn’t stop smiling when my name was announced as the winner of the Welsh Young Butcher competition.“I was happily surprised to win and it’s a big confidence boost. Even though I have only been a butcher for 18 months, this shows that I am good enough to win competitions and I now have a trophy to show customers.”The Welsh Young Butcher competition, which is open to butchers under the age of 25, is organised by award-winning work-based learning provider Cambrian Training Company, who also collaborated with Keith Brown, the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society’s meat production competitions chief steward, to jointly run the Welsh Pork Butcher contest. Both competitions were sponsored by Hybu Cymru (Meat Promotion Wales).