Norfolk farm manager Frazer Jolly will be driving a giant tractor through the heart of London today.

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For the first time the Worship Company of Farmers have been allowed to drive two tractors in the Lord Mayor’s Show – marking two diamond anniversaries.

The oldest and largest civic procession in the world, the Lord Mayor’s Show will celebrate the taking of office of the 685th Lord Mayor of the City of London.

In the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee year, it is also 60 years since the granting of Livery to the Worshipful Company of Farmers. It intends to highlight both the role of UK farming in feeding the nation over the past 60 years but also how the farming industry is advancing to meet future food production needs.

The Queen’s accession will be marked by a 42hp 1952 Fordson tractor, which heralded a time when mechanisation was changing agriculture. Then the world population stood at about 2.5 billion, but is expected to reach nine billion by the year 2050. Not only will this require a rise in agricultural productivity, but also from a shrinking farmed area.

As farmers will be relying on increasingly larger and more sophisticated machinery, the Fordson will be joined by the latest 588hp Claas Xerion 5000 tractor, driven by Mr Jolly, who is farm manager of the South Pickenham estate, near Swaffham.

Just as the Fordson heralded advancing farm mechanisation in the 1950s, so the Xerion 5000 with its high productivity and advanced computerised operating control systems, demonstrates the sophisticated machinery and techniques that farmers will need to meet future food demand.

With some half a million people expected to line the procession route, this potential global audience provides a great showcase to promote the important economic role of farmers in producing food for the nation.

A key role of the Worshipful Company of Farmers is to help promote the better understanding of agriculture and its role in society, but to also provide aid and support for young people within the industry and encourage the development and advancement of agriculture.

John Reynolds, Master of the Farmers Company, said, “We are indebted to Claas for allowing us to show the Xerion 5000 and for their support in arranging this entry. Thanks are also due to Past Master Andrew Streeter, who very kindly agreed to drive his immaculate vintage Fordson in the parade.”

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