Tuesday, September 14, 2010
6 days after being in hospital I was getting a little bored and so Pete and I went off to judge the Melplash Agricultural Society Annual Hedgelaying competition held in conjunction with their ploughing match. We had been invited to this prestigeous task a few months ago and 30 hedgelayers were entered in a range of classes....Open, Novice, Local, Pairs and Young Farmers (thats a class for youngsters and the youngest competitor was 14)
There were several notable hedgelayers competing including the 2008 national champion!
The weather was beautiful and the location stunning, being in West Dorset near Beaminster with views across the Marshwood vale (The vale of the little daries in Thomas Hardy books) to Bridport and sparkling blue sea in the distance!
We walked miles looking and re looking, observing the cut, the style, the use of tools, the skill etc to reach our decisions and also went up for a break to watch the ploughing competition and partake of some super Dorset apple cake and a cup of tea with milk from that mornings milking! The pictures show the Open class hedge just as the competitors were starting, the ploughing competition, including the judges deliberating and two competitors deep in conversation about problems with their plough and the finished hedge in the local competition with the view behind it.