Chris Graham reports from this year’s Biddenden Tractorfest, which benefitted from blistering summer weather and bumper crowds.
The Ford & Fordson Association always puts on a great display at the Biddenden Tractorfest, and this year was no exception, thanks to Rodney Gibson and his enthusiastic team. Here are three of the machines from the extensive display on the club’s stand that illustrate the passage of time; (right to left) M Moss’ 1944 Ford 9N, Tom Smith-Clark’s 1958 Fordson Major and Ross Douglas’s 1989 Ford TW-35.
While not as big as its Yorkshire namesake, the Biddenden Tractorfest is a fantastic event that, judging by the queues to get in I saw on my Saturday visit, is proving a resounding success with the visiting public and it’s certainly easy to appreciate why.
There weren’t too many 1980s tractors on show, so it was good to see Keith Fuller’s very presentable, 1987 Ford 4110, here leaving the tractor arena.
There’s always a tremendous variety of exhibits on show and, with three arenas catering for tractors, classic cars/emergency vehicles and more gentle ‘rural pursuits’, there really is something to interest everyone at this event. In addition, visitors benefitted from a greater number of food outlets this year, plus live music of all sorts, a good selection of trade and craft stands, a funfair and a dedicated animal area.
Here’s another 1980s modern classic; it’s Gordon Smith’s 1985 4610 spotted in the show field.
But, as always, it was all about the tractors for me, despite most of them having to ‘wear’ an unsightly, A4-sized information sheet. This, as far as I’m concerned, spoils the look of the machines and is far less preferable than an unobtrusive exhibitor number that relates to a listing in the event programme, but there we are. A thoroughly good event, nonetheless!
Some tractors lead harder lives than others. Tom Webb’s 1983 4110 Narrow has obviously been in the wars but – hopefully – is in safe hands now.
Mark Hellier’s 1975 Ford 7600 sporting a rack-full of front weights, plus more at the rear.
This is Jason James’ 1943 Fordson Standard N, complete with narrow, ‘wartime’ mudguards.
JP Barden’s beautifully-presented 1942 Ford 9 NAN.
Ford 2000s are quite a rare sight on the show circuit. This 1964 example is owned by Ollie Rolls, and is fitted with Select-O-Speed.
This 1938 Fordson Standard N was used on a plant nursery in Kent until 1959, when it was replaced by a newer machine. It then languished outside and untouched until 1990, when it was rescued and restored over a two-year period. The current owner is M Mount.
Tristan Gordon is evidently getting plenty of enjoyment from parading his original-condition, 1960 Fordson Power Major around the Biddenden arena.
This very tidy, 1973 Ford 3000 is owned by CK Moon and looked a treat in the arena at Biddenden.
Described as a 1952 Fordson Major six-cylinder, this tractor belongs to Solomon Mitchell. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the chance to hear the engine running in the show ring.
This feature comes from the latest issue of Ford & Fordson Tractors, and you can get a money-saving subscription to this magazine simply by clicking HERE