For half a century, the family owned business TH Jenkinson has proudly served Scotland’s and Northern Ireland’s agricultural industries – with 2019 seeing the company celebrate its 50th anniversary with a busy open day in Northern Ireland.

Customers who supported the company in the early years and that have since retired came along as well as some original staff members! Old and new customers were all served a hog roast and a warm welcome!

Later in November, staff from both Scottish depots (Ayr and Castle Douglas) met up with the Northern Ireland staff for a day out in Belfast!

As Scotland’s oldest Ifor Williams dealer, many will be familiar with the company logo displayed on the back of thousands of trailers sold throughout the years – however, like every successful business, the company has evolved and diversified over the years, in line with the ever changing agricultural climate.

Whilst Ifor Williams Trailers remain at the heart of the business, additional dealerships have been acquired to broaden the range of products on offer and more recently machines have been imported direct from Europe to ensure the company can offer competitive prices for all its customers.

The company was established in 1969 by Tom Jenkinson, who left a small family farm to become a salesman for David Brown tractors. After three years of selling and with growing aspirations, he left and formed his own company buying and selling used tractors and machinery.

Tom recalled many eventful trips over the water to Lanark machinery sale, but in his first year of business he had also secured the Ifor Williams' agency for Northern Ireland. As things got busier, in 1973 Tom’s wife, Carol, joined the business to manage the office.

Then, in 1979, there was the company’s first expansion. Tom and his family bought a farm near Castle Douglas where he continued to sell machinery and secured the Ifor Williams agency for South-west Scotland. Ten years later, the business had outgrown the farm, so a two acre site was acquired and purpose-built premises erected at Greenlaw, Castle Douglas. Additional staff were recruited and Brenda Lockhead joined the accounts department – and she celebrated her 30th year with the company in November.

As the customer base grew, Tom found himself frequently at Ayr Market in the town centre meeting customers and delivering trailers there. When the livestock market – now operating as Craig Wilson – moved out of town to its current location at Whitefordhill, the option of additional premises was being made available. It was, therefore, a natural progression for the company to open another depot beside the new market.

More recently, in 2018, a two-acre machinery yard was created at Ayr Market to accommodate an increasing volume of machinery stock. This enables the company to stock more than 500 machines at any one time and maintain competitive prices for all our customers.

Plans are also passed to erect a new workshop at Ayr,which will also increase the storage capacity of spare parts for machines and trailers.

Fifty years on and Tom, alongside his wife, Carol, are still heavily involved in the business. Their sons have followed in their footsteps and family values are very much the core of the business.

"We are extremely thankful to have loyal, hardworking and long serving staff who have supported us along the way," said Tom. "Today, the Scottish business covers the whole of mainland Scotland, as well as the islands with stands at all our local agricultural shows, as well as the Aberdeen Spring Show, Black Isle Show and a large display at the Royal Highland Show, where we can have more than 10 lorry loads of machinery being transported to this great shop window event."

A more recent venture is to attend the LAMMA Show, in Birmingham, which is the UK largest agricultural machinery show and provides the company with the opportunity to supply trade customers as well as farmers direct.

Over the last 50 years, TH Jenkinson have had a regular presence in the Scottish Farmer, with the original adverts being black and white! A snapshot of the adverts from years gone by make for an interesting read!

Tom concluded: "The business would not be here today without the support of our loyal customers locally in Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway, and across the country. We would like to thank everyone for their support over the last 50 years and to wish you all a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year!