Sunday 18th November 09.30 to 14.00 at Charingworth, Ebrington, Gloucestershire
Andrew Drinkwater is holding another ploughing match at Ebrington by kind permission of Mr and Mrs Grahame Fisher. All proceeds are going to Ebrington Church Organ Fund.
During the first half of the 19th century enormous changes were brought about by the abolition of the open field system and the passing of the Enclosure Acts which made significant alterations to the countryside. Stone walls were built and hedges planted, dividing the land into separate holdings with smaller fields resulting in a more efficient management of farming. At this period agriculture was reacting to the stimulus given to it by the noble gentry and farmers who were endeavouring to improve the performance of every practical part of farming by the spreading of all available information on the subject and also by trying to advance the skills of the labourers. Agricultural meetings and ploughing matches had already done much to further this success.
Chipping Campden followed this trend with their first ploughing match held in 1841 on Mr Hancock’s farm at Old Comb, promoted by the Earl of Gainsborough.
On Tuesday September 7th 1841 the ploughs were scheduled to start at 07.00 for “the Cup and Premiums.” The ploughing was said to be “Not first rate” as the weather was unfavourable and it being the first meeting of its kind the ploughmen were “rather embarrassed and not able to do their best.” Three classes were competed, with sovereigns, half sovereigns and crowns given as prizes and a silver cup being given to the owner of the First Prize Plough.
So, 160 + years on Ebrington are maintaining the long standing tradition of Ploughing Matches in the Chipping Campden Area.
Drinkwaters’ Ploughing Match – for information telephone Andrew Drinkwater 01386 593222
The details of the first Chipping Campden Ploughing Match are taken with permission from “Putting their Hands to the Plough” – a short History of Horse Ploughing Matches in the Chipping Campden Area – written and researched by Margaret Fisher and Pearl Mitchell.
Photo used with kind permission of the National Hedge Laying Society http://www.hedgelaying.org.uk/