Club News - No: 61 JUNE - JULY 2014


"From the Chair"

The rally season got off to a splendid start at Tractor World and I’m pleased to say that the show has regained its old sparkle.  The extra room certainly helped, the Ford & Fordson Association’s stand won a rosette and we were certainly very busy on both days.
A good barometer of any show is how the trade stands fair and this year I heard no complaints and certainly no one said to me that they wouldn’t be coming next year.
In the December / January issue of Ford & Fordson Tractors I mentioned that we might hold our next AGM at a Show.  The idea was discussed, at last year’s AGM at Murton and Tractor World was mentioned as a possible venue.  There is a hall available on the Malvern showground on the Sunday of the Tractor World weekend and, as we have received no adverse comments from members it looks, as they say, good to go.
From this issue we have an extra page in the magazine for Club news and affairs so please let me know what is going on in your area, if you don’t tell other members, they won’t know.  I keep asking you for information and dates of forthcoming events, both for these bimonthly notes and to post on the website. I’m truly grateful to those members who take the time to ‘phone or mail anything, thereby sharing with other members what is happening locally; the trouble is that it is only a few that do which means that most members have little news of Club activities in their area.

Regional Reports:

Andrew Gould our Dorset Area Representative writes:

A charity Christmas Road Run was held on 29th December 2013.  It was a crisp dry day, which, despite a bit of ice, made it almost perfect conditions for getting the vintage tractors out.  We commenced from the car park of the Red Lion in Gillingham, with the help of my girlfriend, Charlotte Lilley, together with Tony Fowler, Suzanne Smith and Henry and Sarah Miller. 
Over 30 tractors took part in the 19 mile road run through the beautiful Dorset and Wiltshire countryside.  As the sky was clear the route gave way to outstanding views over the Blackmore Vale and the feedback was very positive.
No round up would be complete without a mention of the tractors participating in the run.  I drove a Fordson Power Major, which is a late model being manufactured in 1960 and a specimen that has been in my family since it came out of the factory.  Charlotte drove a Ford 4000 (1969).  Suzanne drove her late father’s Fordson Dexta (Blue/Grey, New Performance, 1963) while Tony drove Suzanne’s late father’s Fordson Major, a 6 cylinder conversion of a 1952 model. 
Henry Miller also completed the run with an early 1960’s Fordson Dexta. In the mix were also modern tractors and a few stray vintage tractors from other manufacturers. The road run and accompanying raffle raised £344.50 that was split between Salisbury Hospice and Gillingham Town Meadow (who had kindly provided better access from the Red Lion Car Park).
The Christmas road run looks set to become an annual event which complements the summer family fun day and vintage road run organised by Suzanne and Tony.  This year’s summer run will be held at the Udder Farm Shop, East Stour on Saturday 26 July 2014. A date for the December 2014 road run will be announced in due course.
We have had an active winter period with some very good evening meetings and  members are really relaxing and enjoying each other’s company. We most recently had a great day out with a trip to the New Holland Basildon tractor factory followed by a visit to Paul Cable’s superb private collection. We are already planning ahead to the Autumn season.
I would like to promote our Devon FFA organisation and invite members to get in touch and also any from Cornwall and be part of our Group.  I have an email database of contacts and this is how I communicate with the Group as regrettably it is not possible by other methods. But for this to happen it’s up to people to get in touch with me as the first point of contact. Please do this by email to or by ringing 01363-83791 or 0780-903-1177 and advise me of your email contact. Even if you don’t have your own, perhaps you have a family member or friend to take messages for you. Please do get in touch or you are missing out! 
I am will be at the Devon County Show with a blue tractor as I know two or three other members are, so do come by and say hello. I also hope to be at the Mid Devon and Okehampton Shows. I really hope to see some old and new faces!

Keith Broomhall writes:

The Eastern Counties Vintage Tractor Show was held on 29th and 30th March and the FFA were again  present .
In its third year the Show has matured into a major event on the vintage show scene. With well over 500 tractors, cars and commercial exhibits, tractor pulling, the Dancing Does and many trade stands it is certainly a Show to attend.
The range of tractor exhibits was certainly impressive with Roger Desborough making a great effort to achieve this. This year’s theme was a display of products manufactured by Ramsomes Simms and Jefferies and included combines, beet harvesters and all the normal tillage machinery; a whole shed full of interesting machines.
This year the FFA shared a shed with the David Brown Club, our previous partners, my local club, The Tivetshall Old Ram Tractor Club, managing to fill a whole shed by themselves.
The FFA ‘shed’ appeared on the stand again, providing the focal point for our merchandise sales. Refreshments were available to members and friends as well as seats and tables for a rest and talk tractors.
Club members provided a varied and interesting display of tractors with our allocated space filling up very quickly.
Finally, having attended the Saturday evening country feast, may I say well done to the caterers, a very enjoyable meal, and the country music was very good too.
See you at the Show next year.


The Federation of British Historic Vehicle Club

Issue 2 of this year’s ‘News’ has just been published.  The FFA is affiliated and the magazines are available to members via our website.  I would draw members attention to two articles which will be of particular interest. The first concerns the “Extension of the Historic Vehicle Tax threshold” which is not as straight forward as one might think, together with other DVLA matters that you should be aware of.  The second article is about tyre ageing, the risks and what you should look out for.  This is particularly apposite as far as I’m concerned, as I have had to change both tyres on my caravan that were not 5 years old.  As many of you will know to your cost how expensive tyre failure can be; not to mention the terror and I use that word advisedly, experienced when changing an off side wheel on a motorway or major trunk road.
These publications will keep you up to speed with changes in the law, be it vehicle or driving licences, vehicle testing, the use of rebated fuel, ‘SORN’ regulations and much more.  Governments seem to produce more and more regulations, despite promising to do exactly the opposite and it is difficult to keep up. News is published bimonthly and can help to keep you legal and more importantly safe, to parody Gordon I commend it to you.

................ and Finally, 

I shall close on a personal note. By the autumn of this year I shall have completed three years as your chairman.  I have enjoyed my time and the Club is now in good fettle, it is financially sound and at last has a clear direction.  The committee works as a team and, make no mistake, it is teamwork that is responsible for the Club’s progress over the last four years.  Of course changes will always need to be made and I have every confidence that they will be.
However I think that three years is long enough in the job and that it is time for someone else to take it on, in fact by the next AGM it will have been nearly three and a half.  I don’t spend as much time in my shed as I would like and the backlog of unfinished projects is mounting and I’m not getting any younger. I know that can be said of us all but I started before some of you.