Melplash Agricultural Society celebrates 175 years with a hedgelaying and ploughing match

Melplash Agricultural Society celebrates 175 years with a hedgelaying and ploughing match

H 03

The Melplash Agricultural Society’s annual Hedgelaying and Ploughing Match took place on 60 acres at Higher Langdon, near Beaminster in a tradition dating back 175 years.
The society is passionate about keeping the ancient skills of hedgelaying and ploughing alive for the many farming families and countrymen in the area who for generations have passed on the skills.
It has been 175 years since the first Melplash Agricultural Society’s ploughing match took place in Melplash, and this year the event was held on land by kind permission of Tessa MacKenzie-Green and Richard Peck of Sentry Farms.
Prior to the much-heralded ploughing match, the society hosted a free hedgelaying taster day attended by 13 members of the Beaminster Young Farmers and 21 keen cutters, who all took part in in the novice pairs competition on match day. On match day, ploughmen and hedgelayers from as far afield as Cullompton, Hereford and Bristol, competed in the various classes.
A demonstration of horse ploughing was given by Mike Puxty with his magnificent shires, Sam and Tilly.
The time fixed for ploughing half-an-acre with horses was three-and-a-half hours.
Society match chairman Tim Frampton said: “It was a fantastic day, and so good to see so many people coming to watch.
“Thank you to everyone who made the day possible; the landowners, the stewards and helpers, the competitors and the judges.
“The annual hedgelaying and ploughing match is always an important day in the society’s calendar.
“As well as marking the start of the society in 1847, it gives all of us who work on the land an opportunity to show others our skills and the pride we have in the work we do.
“Winning of course is a bonus and a position we can enjoy until next year.”
The prizes were presented by the society’s president, Nigel Jones.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *