Plenty in store for Longford farming enthusiasts at National Ploughing Finals

Plenty in store for Longford farming enthusiasts at National Ploughing Finals

It may be the best part of two weeks away, but excitement ahead of this year's National Ploughing Championships is steadily gaining momentum.

Along with the umpteen classes that will be down for decision on the day,  an array of new exhibitors as well as hundreds of outstanding veteran companies showcasing their products and services have been added.

 The very latest models in agricultural machinery will be on display, as will those in quality livestock together with  a Forestry Village and Food Fayre will take centre stage. 

Organisers have also pencilled in an International Business Centre in the Innovation Arena and an extended Local Enterprise Village with over 80 exhibitors as well as National Baking Competitions, Garden Displays, Craft Shows and many topical seminars.

Not bad for what promises to be three days of the finest in agricultural excellence this country has to offer.

That's not all however. Exciting new initiatives this year  include the Machine of the Year competition, charity calves auction and Ireland’s first ever tractor football matches.  

The Volkswagen Amorak V6 Experience, an exhilarating 4 x 4 off-road driving experience is not for the faint hearted either.

  Improving visitor experience has also taken precedence ahead of this year's event. As such the National Ploughing Association (NPA) has  piloted a park n ride system for Dublin traffic.  The service will be complimentary and operate frequently each way throughout the 3 days giving visitors the added benefit of a drop off point within a few hundred metres of exhibition arena.

Visitors to this year’s National Ploughing Championships will also have the opportunity to get train transport  from around Ireland to travel to Tullamore, where Bus Éireann will operate a shuttle service for the short (5 km) trip to the Screggan site over the days from September 20-22.

“The Championships not only provides a national stage for showcasing all things agricultural, but also brings together people from all sectors of Irish society both rural and urban, to enjoy three days immersed in country living,” said NPA Managing Director Anna May McHugh.

“It is great to see the phenomenal interest in the Ploughing Championships with countries such as Australia, France, UK, Netherlands, New Zealand, Czech Republic, Germany, Canada and Belgium exhibiting.”

With such a cosmopolitan feel to this year's line up, it's hardly surprising why organisers are quietly confident spectators will be out in force when proceedings kick off in two weeks time.

 The National Ploughing Championships takes place from September 20-22 in Screggan, Tullamore, Co Offaly.