Tractor festival ploughs in record attendances

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Thousands of visitors from across the UK descended on Ripon for the biggest ever Tractor Fest.

More than 10,000 visitors flocked to the Newby Hall site where they were treated to the spectacle of a record-breaking gathering of more than 1,000 of the popular Massey Ferguson tractors at the tenth annual event.

NARG 1506062AM4 Tractor Festival. Six years old Tilly Price.(1506062AM4)

NARG 1506062AM4 Tractor Festival. Six years old Tilly Price.(1506062AM4)

Richard Sturdy, chairman for the festival organisers, Yorkshire Vintage Association said: “This year was the best ever Tractor Fest - with such a huge turnout it is surely now Europe’s leading vintage show for enthusiasts and families alike.

“Now it is on with planning for next year’s show and we already know what the theme is - Made in Yorkshire.”

One of the highlights of the annual festival is the March of the Tractors. And this year 150 vehicles start out from Newby Hall to the Market Square in Ripon city centre on Saturday teatime where shops, cafes and restaurants stayed open to mark the occasion.

They were sent on their way back to Newby Hall by the Ripon Hornblower Paul Schofield.

At this year’s event, sponsored by machinery auctioneers Cheffins, visitors came face-to-face with the biggest hot tube engine dating back to 1904 and weighing about 3.5tonnes.

A First World War Model T Ford water carrier restored by Pontefract man Alan Rogerson and a fuschia pink and gold Ferguson tractor from Cumbria also brought colour to the two-day festivities.

Other attractions for families included working machinery, free tractor and trailer rides, cars and trucks, vintage tractor pulling, interactive exhibits, food stalls and trade stands.

Engines and touring cars were also showcased at the expanded layout with exhibits arriving from around the UK and Europe.

Mr Sturdy added: “This year’s event featured more than 1,500 exhibits, including tractors, engines and vintage vehicles, many of them vintage steel-wheeled engines dating from the earliest days of farm mechanisation.”