Farmers battle it out in annual ploughing match

Farmers battle it out in annual ploughing match

James Preston

Farmers battle it out in annual ploughing match

Farmers from across East Berkshire put their skills to the test at a highly-competitive annual ploughing match in Wargrave on Sunday.

Richard and James Copas saw Copas Farms take away the Maidenhead Advertiser Challenge Cup and the King George VI Challenge Cup

After horrendous downpours last year, organisers were blessed with dry conditions for the Royal East Berks Agricultural Association Ploughing Match 2013 at Mumbery Hill, which saw participants compete in a range of categories and the association dish out prestigious awards for the best farms in the area.

This year's big winner was Copas Farms, which has sites at a number of locations, including Cookham and Taplow, and picked up the Maidenhead Advertiser Challenge Cup for best farmed farm over 1,000 acres.

It also scooped the overall award for best farm, the King George VI Challenge Cup.

A delighted Richard Copas, who runs the business with father, Geoffrey, and brother, James, praised the hard work, commitment and attention to detail of the team faced with a hard winter.

He added: "In East Berkshire we are fortunate to have a community of excellent, progressive farmers who are dedicating themselves to balancing the need to produce food with protecting the environment for future generations in an area of high population density. 

"This is never going to be an easy task, but their commitment and skill is making the level of competition higher and higher."

Sunday's event also saw a host of activities to keep visitors entertained, with ploughmen arriving to compete with state-of-the-art models and classics from the 1960s.

Ploughmen were required to plough a set area within an allotted time as part of the competition.

Tractor rides, a falconry display and a dog show also took place, while competitors were also able to enter cakes and eggs for judging.

The next event will take place on Sunday, September 28, 2014.

A Macmillan coffee morning hosted by Tina Emmett, Thelma Copas, and Charlotte Copas at the show raised £4,250 for the charity.

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