With what was to be the National Ploughing Championships’ 90th year, we reflect on NCFRS’s time at the ‘Ploughing’.

Originally planned for the 15th – 17th September, the 2021 Trade Exhibition will not be taking place in Ratheniska, Co Laois again this year. It is cancelled for the second year in a row due to restrictions, uncertainty and public health and safety concerns from the Covid 19 virus.

NCFRS has always had a presence at the event since the very early 80’s. Throughout the years the ‘Ploughing’ gave the FRS team an opportunity to reconnect and thank many customers, chat to new faces and showcase the wide variety of services we have to offer.

The FRS stand started out by serving tea, coffee and sandwiches made by staff, friends, and neighbours, and grew to a bigger stand and demonstration area where we launched services and courses. Over the years the FRS display area and stand space took up quite a considerable size as we promoted various aspects of our business from sheep scanning, to hoof care – with both live animals and more recently with dead claws, fencing demonstrations, farm safety exhibits, chainsaw demonstrations, and a display of our wide range of fences.

In recent years we also started charity initiatives where we would select a charity and have a collection point on site. Pieta House, St. Vincent De Paul, Scouting Ireland and North Tipp Hospice were among the beneficiaries.

We’ve had plenty of highs at the biggest outdoor exhibition and agricultural trade show in Europe. Some notable years include our tractor driving competition in 2012 which attracted the interest of celebrities and national media, launching farming app Herdwatch in 2013 and our Best Practice in Milking QQI course with a mini operational milking parlour outside our marquee in 2014.

Unfortunately, there were also some lows as weather conditions during the event has proven to be very diverse over the years. In 2017, the FRS stand and demonstration area was completely flooded. Then the whole show was cut short in 2018 due to the strong winds of storm Ophelia.

Fans of the National Ploughing Championships can follow them online where they will have a week of highly interactive and immersive #Ploughing2021 digital activations for all to get involved with.

Once again, we are looking forward to connecting with customers, friends, and the general public online. Follow FRS Farm Relief on Facebook @ frsfarmrelief to be in with a chance to win some great prizes throughout the week. Herdwatch will also have limited offers throughout the week, follow them on @herwatch.

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