Romantic proposal for European Champion

  • John Crowder from Sturton-by-Stow, Lincolnshire, recently travelled to Northern Ireland to represent England in the European Vintage Ploughing Championships and swept the board, winning not just the title for Vintage Trailing Ploughing, the overall European Vintage Ploughing Champion title but his future bride too

It’s great to see that romance is alive and well in the world of ploughing!

John had decided beforehand that if he won his class, he would propose to his girlfriend Laura Dickson, so when he also took the overall title, immediately after he had been presented with the trophies in the ploughing field, he asked her the all important question.  And she said yes!

John was ploughing in Ballykelly, Northern Ireland against other European countries and finished a massive 120 points ahead of second place in his class.  He will now be getting his Fordson N tractor and Ransome RSLD Major plough ready for the forthcoming British National Ploughing Championships which are to be held on the Chatsworth Estate at Glapwell, North East Derybshire on 8th and 9th October.  He will be trying to retain the British Vintage Trailing Plough Champion and to win a place to next year’s European Championships.

He will be joined by over 240 other ploughmen and women from around Great Britain who will be taking part over the two days with vintage trailed, vintage hydraulic, classic, classic reversible, world style conventional and reversible, high cut, garden tractors and magnificent heavy horses.  There will also be championship classes for the Ferguson, Ford & Fordson and David Brown tractor clubs.

John will be hoping to be one of sixty of the top competitors on the first day who will go on to take part in their respective ‘Plough-Off Final’ on the second day, wanting to not only win the British title but to win a place to represent England in next year’s World and European Ploughing Contests.  The title of Supreme Champion is also up for grabs when the champions plots are judged against each other.

Alongside the competitions, on a site covering more than 250 acres kindly provided by the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, visitors will be able to see displays and working demonstrations of various vintage tractors and machinery from over the years; agricultural based trade stands; new machinery demonstrations; shopping stalls; craft stalls and four giant Fowler BB steam ploughing engines working the fields.  To get around this huge site there will be tractor and trailer rides provided by members of Pleasley Young Farmers Club.

The British Championships are organised and run by volunteers from the Society of Ploughmen, a registered charity, and main sponsors of the event this year are Bridgestone Firestone and Aztec Oils, with further support from Tama Farm Grown Solutions, Lantra Awards, Dales Agri Sales, Cheffins, Friends of Ferguson Heritage, Cereals Event, Dalton Tags, Agricultural & Farming Jobs and Ripon Farm Services

The site will be easy to find, it’s just a few minutes from the junction 29 of M1 motorway  between Chesterfield and Mansfield. Further information can be found on or on Facebook and Twitter.