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Bygone haymaking skills to be brought back to life at Royal Norfolk Show

Haymaking is the theme of the vintage farming working demonstration at the 2019 Royal Norfolk Show. Picture: Tractor Barn Productions

Haymaking is the theme of the vintage farming working demonstration at the 2019 Royal Norfolk Show. Picture: Tractor Barn Productions

Tractor Barn Productions

Haymaking from the 1930s and 1950s will be the focus of the traditional celebration of bygone farming methods at this week's Royal Norfolk Show.

Haymaking is the theme of the vintage farming working demonstration at the 2019 Royal Norfolk Show. Picture: Tractor Barn ProductionsHaymaking is the theme of the vintage farming working demonstration at the 2019 Royal Norfolk Show. Picture: Tractor Barn Productions

Graham Kirk, organiser of the vintage farming working display at the show, said: "Although farming in general was at a rather low ebb in the 1930s haymaking, or "haysal" as it was locally referred to, was something of great importance and in some cases quite profitable - but good weather was needed to make good hay.

"Hay was very important, not only for horses and livestock on farms but also there were many horses used by a variety of different businesses.

"In towns and cities there were horses used in the delivery of goods and services. These included breweries, dairies, grocery outlets and railway deliveries to name only a few. Even in rural areas many supplies were delivered by horse and cart.

"The second period will be looking at the early 1950s. By then many of the outlets for hay of the 1930s had been reduced as the horse was being replaced by the use of motor transport.

Haymaking is the theme of the vintage farming working demonstration at the 2019 Royal Norfolk Show. Picture: Tractor Barn ProductionsHaymaking is the theme of the vintage farming working demonstration at the 2019 Royal Norfolk Show. Picture: Tractor Barn Productions

"Therefore, the acreage for growing hay was somewhat less. Hay was, however, still a very important crop in Norfolk and more was grown then than there is today."

The demonstration aims to show the different techniques involved in making hay with the machines that were introduced in the post-war period, but also to demonstrate some of the 1930s machines and haymaking methods which were still in operation.

- The vintage demonstrations will take place at 11am and 2.30pm on each day of the Royal Norfolk Show, which will take place on June 26 and 27 at the Norfolk Showground in Norwich. For more information, see the Royal Norfolk Show website.

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