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Plough power

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By Bob Geddes
Annan and Eskdale
Plough power
LEARNING THE SKILLS . . . left to right: Tyler Donaldson, Lewis Lawson,Watt Bell with Grandson Henry

VINTAGE ploughmen got back into action on Saturday when 17 of them took part in a practice and fun day at Plump Farm, Springfield, near Gretna.

It was organised by Canonbie Vintage Club and gave members and visitors a chance to get back into action after the COVID-19 pandemic curbed their activities over the past 17 months.

Joint organisers for the event were John Johnstone and Willie Turnbull and they were delighted with the turnout which is a prelude to a ploughing competition to be held at Ecclefechan next Saturday August 14 by the club.

Mr Johnstone said: “We are always very much indebted to David Wilson at the Plump Farm who is very obliging and tries to accommodate us every year.

“Our match next week is at Hodhamtown Farm where we expect to have a good entry and the competitors will be judged. We usually try to have a match at the Plump Farm and another somewhere else as well.

“It’s difficult now to get a stubble field for the ploughing but David is always obliging and he enjoys the vintage stuff for he has cars of his own.”

JUST PERFECT . . . making a good job with his plough

Mr Johnstone said that it was all vintage and classic that the club had and at the main match each year they usually got between 40 and 50 competitors but in the current climate some people are not coming for different reasons.

He added: “A lot of people are looking for practice this year for the British National Ploughing Championships which are held in different parts of the country each year and are coming to Kelso this year, so everyone is quite pleased to practice if they’re going to be going over there.

“Probably two or three of us will be going over there for you have to qualify for quite a number of the classes over there.”

The Canonbie Club has been going for over 20 years and Mr Johnstone said he has a been involved for 20 years.

The club organises a road run each year and this year it was held recently and took the form of a memorial charity run in memory of Jerome Foster who died last year and which went up to the Westerkirk and Langholm areas.

Mr Johnston said that although there was still a lot of interest in vintage ploughing, it was difficult to get younger members involved and they always welcomed anyone who was interested.

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