This is Xanthe on the family’s vintage Fergusson TE20, the oldest tractor on the 2012 Ladies Tractor Run in Norfolk on 1st July. It was manufactured in 1949 and has been in the family since 1952 when her parents bought it to use on their stud and farm in Surrey.
At one time they had more than thirty horses, a few cows, pigs, chickens and geese. It was used more or less everyday for many years both for general farm duties but also in the summer for hay making. ‘At harvest time it was a case of ‘all hands on deck’ for the family as soon as the weather permitted’.
After her father stopped farming in the 1980’s, the tractor moved to Cambridgeshire where it spent most of its time in Xanthe’s sister’s barn. Finally it was restored by good friend Ray Parcell, a vintage tractor enthusiast, and now takes part in road runs with the pink ladies and elsewhere. ‘And it is still in use with a cutter for mowing our paddock in the summer.’
‘But the nicest thing about driving the tractor, is that on the road runs so many people get to see these lovely tractors. It always amazes me how many older people remember the ‘little grey fergie’ tractors from their past.’