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News release - Issued by The Society of Ploughmen Limited

World Ploughing 2016: Ploughing’s ‘Olympics’ ready for the off

Dubbed the Olympics of the ploughing world, ploughmen and one woman from throughout the world will congregate in the village of Crockey Hill, south of York, ready for the World Ploughing Contest this week.

This amazing event will see the 66th British National Ploughing Championships on the first two days and the 63rd World Ploughing Contest and first ever World Vintage Ploughing Championships on the second two days. Local farmers, Hobson Farming Ltd, have given over 500 acres of their prime farmland to be used for the event.

It is traditional to hold a Blessing of the Plough church service prior to both of these competitions and this year it will be the most impressive service ever held. On Wednesday 7th September at 5.15 pm, the Service will be held in York Minster - the venue itself has got to be the best one in the country, but to make it extra special for all the world-wide competitors and visitors, a heavy horse will bring the plough inside at the beginning of the service. The present British Horse Ploughing Champion – who will be taking part in the Championships – Jim Elliott, from Beamsish, Co Durham, will take one of his horses, duly booted, into the Minster to lead the procession of the competitors with their country’s flags.

The following two days – Thursday 8th and Friday 9th September will see the British National Ploughing Championships with over 250 ploughmen and women from throughout Great Britain taking part, with two of the classes trying to win a place to represent their country at next year’s World Ploughing Contest which will be held in Kenya. Also ploughing will be young farmers, vintage trailed, hydraulic and classic finals, high cut tractor ploughing along with classes for Ferguson, Ford and David Brown tractors. Forty heavy horses will be ploughing side-by-side on these two days, reminding us of an age when farming was done at a much slower pace.

The second two days will see the World Ploughing Contest, with the National champions from 30 countries vying to win the gold medals. Flying the flag for England is Peter Alderslade from Tyne & Wear in the reversible championship and on his home turf, Yorkshireman David Chappell from Doncaster will take part in the conventional championship.

The 1st World Vintage Ploughing Championships will take place over the weekend with ploughmen from the home countries, Europe and ones travelling from South Africa, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. A demonstration of horse ploughing, a harness display and a European Horse Ploughing Class also be held over the weekend.

World Ploughing 2016 will appeal to everyone with a love of the countryside as alongside the ploughing competitions there is much more for visitors to see. Vintage tractors will be seen in a ‘Century of Agriculture’ with tractors from the last century being displayed and also demonstrated over the four days of the event.

The central part of the site will be taken by a large trade stand area with space being taken by a wide variety of agricultural and farming businesses and next to these, are the smaller shopping stalls and crafts found at county shows.

Also over the four days, visitors will also be able to see a steam cultivation spectacular, organised by the Steam Plough Club, with the title ‘A Celebration of Steam’. Giant engines and tackle will be on show made from the 1860s onwards, with many being demonstrated on the 60 acres of land they are using. Some rare exhibits will be taken out of museums to show a fantastic array of equipment with some thirty steam ploughing engines, four traction engines and other implements.

Sue Frith from the Society of Ploughmen, organisers of the event, said “Everyone is so excited World Ploughing 2016 is coming to York this year as it won’t be held here again for quite some years. Spectators can see how farming has changed over the last 300 or so years and there’s plenty to interest everyone.”

Sponsors include Bridgestone/Firestone, Crombie Wilkinson Solicitors, Syngenta, Gallagher Group, Friends of Ferguson Heritage, Carter Jonas LLP, S&H Stacey, J Elliott, Barugh & District Ploughing Association, Cheffins, Graham Edwards Machinery, Westlake, Old20 Parts, Service Timber, Yorkshire Agricultural Society and J T Hopkins & Sons.

The site is easy to find, it’s off the A19 just 5 miles south of York and will be signed from major roads. Further information can be found on or from the Society of Ploughmen on 01302 852469 and you can follow them on Facebook and Twitter.


Note to editors:

Some competitors taking part in the World Ploughing Contest can be seen practising should you wish to arrange to take photographs/film.

For further information contact:

Sue Frith

The Society of Ploughmen Limited, Quarry Farm, Loversall, Doncaster, South Yorkshire, DN11 9DH Telephone: 01302 852469 Fax: 01302 859880 e-mail: