Historic farming festival comes to Crewe

Barthomley on The Duchy of Lancaster’s Crewe Estate will play host to one of the North West’s most popular farming festivals on 28th September 2011.

The Cheshire Ploughing and Hedgecutting Society will be holding its 88th ‘Match’ in the village this year. The annual event, which tours the county, offers visitors an insight into old and new farming methods including over 120 trade stands, demonstrations and competitions such as horse ploughing and hedgelaying.

Cheshire Ploughing and Hedge Laying Match secretary Norman Lawson who organises the event every year with his wife, said: “The Match has become one of the industry’s most popular events attracting around 4,000 people every year.

“There is going to be a huge demonstration area, a falconry display and of course the competitions which are always a big attraction, in particular the horse ploughing.

“This year around 100 people have entered the vintage and classic tractors ploughing event making it one of the largest competitions of its kind in the country. They’ll be 11 pairs of horses in action and also 35 hedgelayers. Hedgelaying is a very traditional craft that’s been going on for centuries and is well worth seeing. The aim is to turn an old hedge into a thicker one, so that livestock can’t go through it and to enable it to last for many years.”

Paul Clarke CEO and Clerk of The Duchy of Lancaster which is also sponsoring the event added: “The Cheshire Ploughing Match is considered by many to be the largest and most successful purely agriculture show in the country, so we’re delighted to be supporting it this year. It’s sure to be a fantastic day out with something for everyone involved in agriculture or who simply loves the countryside.”

The Society was formed 100 years ago by a group of Cheshire farmers to settle an argument about who had the best ploughmen and hedgelayers. At the time, large numbers of people were employed on the land and all the ploughing was done using horses. This year’s President of the Society is Mark Hudson who is also a member of The Duchy of Lancaster’s Council, which is responsible to the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, and the Chancellor to the Sovereign, for the Duchy’s affairs.

The Cheshire Ploughing Match will take place from 9am – 5pm on 28th September at Flash House Farm in Barthomley, just a mile from junction 16 M6/A500. It costs £8 to enter