John Deere tractors and ploughs were out on force for a charity event, near Inverness, last Saturday, to raise funds for two well-known children’s charities.

The event – appropriately named Field of Deere – was organised by local farmer and businessman Willie Lean, in memory of his nephew Brodie Walker, who passed away in October, 2018.

More than £6000 has been raised and will be equally divided between the two chosen charities – MFR Cash For Kids and CHAS (Children’s Hospices Across Scotland).

A total of 32 ploughmen from the length and breadth of Scotland assembled at Mr Lean’s 100-acre block of stubble land, with one participant, Danny Key, making a 500-mile round trip from his home in Lockerbie to take part in the event.

Initially, more than 40 tractors and ploughs were entered for the event but due to Covid-19 and transport issues, not all could make it on the day.

The main highlight of the event was a speed ploughing challenge which saw 20 tractors and ploughs cover a 20-acre field in an impressive 21 minutes and 30 seconds, before moving onto a 40-acre block which was ploughed by all 32 participates in a more leisurely fashion within a timeframe of 45 minutes.

More than 400 spectators from as far east as Peterhead and as far north as Caithness, gathered to watch the green and yellow spectacle, which included a vast range of John Deere tractor vintages and ploughs.

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The team varied from a 955 compact tractor with a single furrow plough right up to a John Deere 8RX 370 tracked machine supplied by local dealership, Netherton Tractors.

One ploughmen also made a special purchase for the event and bought a vintage plough from Orkney to be there on the day.

Mr Lean said he was blown away with the support from the local farming community and those further afield, as well as local businesses which made donations on the run up to the event.

“It was a truly fantastic day from start to finish and I am so humbled by everybody’s generosity,” he said. “Initially, it was going to be a low-key event, but it grew arms and legs, and we had huge interest from all over. You could see how much the participants and spectators enjoyed a day out after a quiet two years.

"We kept advertising fairly low-key as well and made use of the Field of Deere Facebook page where you can now see lots of coverage from the day. Plans are already in place to make it an even bigger and better event next year so please stay tuned for more information,’’ he added.