As you may have guessed from the blogs title, there is something I have become very fond of whilst being here at COAM……. TRACTORS!
Having very limited experience on tractors, but a keen interest since from when I can remember, I made a tractor driving course high on my priority. I attended a two day course at the Royal Agricultural College in Cirencester were I obtained my tractor driving and machine handing certificate. With my main interest in tractors of an older generation I was much unprepared when meeting what I thought was nothing short of a spaceship.
Fortunately my instructor on the course was also interested in older tractors and would often refer to them during the training. Over the two days I was able to understand the controls needed for most jobs from simple driving to using powered implements on the PTO (power take off).
Since then I have been very fortunate to use my skills during the process of planting of this year’s wheat. I was able to use a harrow after it had been ploughed, which is essentially breaking the bigger clods of soil into smaller ones. I was then able to harrow after the wheat had been sown to disperse and bury it and then roll it to complete the process.
A personal favourite of mine is the Fergusson TE35 we have on site. A brilliant little tractor and a real classic example of extraordinary agricultural engineering of times gone by.
A new additional to the farms supply of work horses is on the small size, in the shape of a Kubota B1620 which at its rather “cute”, size its ideal for jobs like getting through the woodlands narrow paths and transporting fire wood. A handy extra is the tipping trailer which we brought with it, meaning we can load and tip all sorts of things from brushwood to gravel.
I really do appreciate how vital a tractor is to running a farm, especially when seeing Rob working the heavy horses on site. It’s a reminder of the extraordinary extra amount of work that was involved before the introduction of tractors.
Written by Josh Hayes
HLF Farm and Site Trainee