As the National Ploughing Championships 2018 came to a close, the talk amongst everyone was definitely that this year’s ploughing would be one for the history books after storm Ali hit on day two (Wednesday) forcing the event to shut down for the entire day and the unprecedented opening of the event on Friday to continue as a three-day event. Despite the chaos of Storm Ali, the exhibitors, contractors, service providers, the NPA team and local volunteers put in a tremendous effort and returned the site once again for a great day on Thursday, with numbers visibly lower on the Friday.

Following reported attendances of 97,500 and 81,500 on Tuesday and Thursday respectively, the total attendance over the course of the three days amounted to about 240,700. This means that the overall figures for 2018 were down by around 50,800 compared to last years’ event. Despite this, the ploughing still turned out to be a successful event despite the set backs and at the FRS stand it was business as usual.

The FRS team from all of our divisions: Farm Relief Services, Fencing, Training, Recruitment and herdwatch were all out in force. We had live hoof care, chainsaw and fencing demonstrations taking place throughout the days that were all clearly seen live on our ‘big screen’. Onlookers took away expert hints and tips to be more efficient with their hoof care regime and fencing and safer when using the chainsaw.

FRS Farm Relief Services ran a recruitment drive, with training and job opportunities for farm workers, milkers and hoof care technicians. There were full-time and part-time opportunities available offering flexibility, competitive rates, training, experience and career progression. To find what current roles are available visit

We also got to chat to people from our work exchange programme with New Zealand and FRS operators from around the country, who shared their experiences of working with FRS and farmers. For more information on the Ireland and New Zealand exchange visit:
This year, we were delighted to have North Tipperary Hospice serving tea & coffee to all the people who passed throughout the FRS stand for tea and a chat over the duration of the three days, it added a great atmosphere to the event and to the stand.

And with that, another year at the ploughing comes to a close, it was definitely one of the more memorable ones with storm Ali making her presence known and leaving her mark. We were one of the lucky ones that escaped her force and could open our marquee doors to continue with our largest event of the year. Thank you to all of the staff who helped out, to all our loyal customers and the people who came to visit our stand. As always it is greatly appreciated.

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