Island Life Magazine Ltd October/November 2011 - Page 72

COUNTRY LIFE George takes top prize at IW Ploughing Match 72 George Watts from Merstone emerged as champion when the Isle of Wight Ploughing Association held their annual match at Appleford Farm. It proved something of a clean sweep for the Watts family, as George and his brother David, along with their father Arnold, picked up no fewer than nine prizes between them. Although there were slightly fewer entries this year, with 54 - all from the Island - taking part, competition was just as keen. And despite some heavy and blustery showers throughout the morning the day cleared into a sunny afternoon. The weather was not too kind for the spectators early on, but the rain made little difference to the soil conditions, with the sandy loam soil ploughing up dry from underneath. The three ploughing judges this year came from the county of Devon. A pair of heavy horses from Windmill Farm Supplies attended the match and gave a static display of their size and splendour. There were some 26 trade stands varying from tractor and farm machinery agents, to agricultural and rural activity tents as well as a drilling rig for supply bore hole providing green energy. Also on site was a stand by the IW Police promoting the merits and success of Farm Watch. Not only do the IW Ploughing Match Association organise the annual ploughing match they organise dairy and crops competitions throughout the year. The oldest tractor ploughing in this year’s match was a 70 year old 1940 Case model D tractor which came third out of 16 competitors in Class 2. The organisers thanked Mr. and Mrs. C. Clarke of Cridmore Farms for the use of the perfect site, and also to Mrs. Jan Clarke for presenting the prizes to the winners on the field at the end of proceedings, as well as the numerous sponsors who contributed to the success of the event. The Judges