THE HARRY FERGUSON LECTURE
ANNUAL TRACTOR ROAD RUN 15TH AUGUST 2014
Harry Ferguson joins Children’s Hospice to raise funds at annual tractor road run.
This year the Ferguson Committee invited Northern Irelands Children’s Hospice to be the beneficiary at this event. The event will start from the usual place Ballykeel, Baptist church car park, and will assemble from 6.30 pm for a 7.30pm start. Over 100 tractors will take part, mostly Ferguson but all makes are welcome. Both the committee and myself are sure that all attenders will be proud to be associated with such a very worthy cause.
On site will be Children’s Hospice volunteers and a free BBQ for exhibitors and those taking part.
Our route this year has been changed and travels as follows:
Leaving Ballykeel Baptist the cavalcade proceeds to Magheraconluce Road past the memorial garden. Then left into Ballylintagh Rd, left to Magheraconluce Lane, then right to Drumlough Rd. At cross roads [Spence Engineering] travel straight ahead, then at end of Drumlough Rd taking left to Dromara Rd past Drumlough dump and returning to starting point.
The event has been very successful in the past and very beneficial to the worthy charities chosen, The Ferguson committee would like to thank all exhibitors and spectators who support this annual event, and welcome any newcomers who wish to attend. No entry application required, just turn up on the night and enjoy the atmosphere and food and at the same time support our Children’s Hospice.
Further information can be obtained from either:
Bill Forsythe – 07720262530
Gerald Law – 02892693434
The Harry Ferguson Lecture
For your own tractor games check out:
There are many tractor model collectors out there as evidenced by the numbers attending the various exhibitions such as the Northern Ireland Toy and Model Show earlier this year. This hobby has grown over the years and some of the models available now are so detailed that it is impossible to tell a model from the real thing if photographed in the right setting.
See more photographs like these at this site for inspiration: National Minitrac
This advertisement in an old Meccano Magazine from September 1959 may bring back some memories from your childhood or inspire you to add it to your collection. Note the title as a Massey-Harris-Ferguson whose 60th anniversary we celebrate this year.
And finally for all you collectors out we still have some limited edition Ferguson TE20 and MF35 with Homestead background still available from our shop (£10 +p&p)
There are many Ferguson Tractors through out the world and we would really like to see your photos of your Ferggie or any Ferggies that you come across on your travels, like this series of photographs taken on a remote part of the coast of Turkey. No disputes here about the colour of the grey!
If you have any unusual or unique photographs of a Ferguson that you would like to share please send them to: firstname.lastname@example.org marking them: “FERGUSON UNUSUAL PHOTO”. We will put the best onto our new website.
14 Nov 2014 @ Hillsborough Village Centre
8.00pm Welcome and Introductions (Bill Forsythe)
8.10pm “Crosslé Car Company – Seven Decades to the Fore” by Mr Paul McMorran
Following Paul’s presentation, a new book by Alan ‘Plum’ Tyndall entitled ‘Hidden Glory, the Story of the Crosslé Car Company’ will be introduced, and available to purchase by those interested.
8.50pm Interval for supper
9.10pm Historic Film
9.50pm Presentation of The George Cromie Bursary (Cromie family)
Sponsored by Advanced Fasteners, Hillsborough.
9.55pm Acknowledgements, Presentations and concluding remarks (Bill Forsythe)
Thank you for your support.
Henry George Ferguson was an Irish engineer and inventor who is noted for his role in the development of the modern tractor, becoming the first Irishman to build and fly his own aeroplane, and for developing the first four-wheel drive Formula One car.
Born in 1884, Harry was the son of Mary and James and the 4th child of 11 in the Ferguson family.
Harry attended Drumlough primary school not far from the family home at Growell outside Dromore, he was a bit of a lad in his youth and had more interest in doing things he wasn’t allowed to do than attending school, in fact he was expelled from that same school for a short time for misbehaviour.
Harry’s parents were from a strict Plymouth brethren belief and rules were meant to be obeyed and that meant helping out on the farm as heavy manual labour.
Harry left school at 14 and he was of small stature and not really suited to this type of farm work but was expected to do his bit on the farm.
By the time he was 18 he gathered up enough money to emigrate to Canada but was stalled by his brother Joe who offered him an apprentaship in his car and cycle business in Shankill Rd Belfast, harry accepted and enjoyed the challenge turning out to be a great asset to Joe’s business, Harry was good at tuning engines and improvement modifications and as a result Joe’s business thrived.
Harry attended Belfast Technical College at night to improve his education and skills.
Later on harry took part in motorcycle and car racing in the 1920s and this took place around the well known circuit of the Ards TT. Harry loved speed and was in his element having earned the title “THE MAD MECHANIC”.
Harry also had a desire to build and fly his own aircraft which in fact he did having his first official flight in December 1909, it was also noted that he was the first Irishman to build and fly his own aircraft and the first to have a female passenger.
Now most people relate harry to the famous grey tractor we see all over the world and rightly so as it was a great design and still working today on many small farms, however it was indeed a system of mechanical engineering called the 3 point linkage that harry is famous for, this was his claim to fame and it works of the hydraulic system at the back of the tractor enabling the driver to raise and lower any implement mainly a plough and therefore making farming so much easier, of course the development of such a design took time and this FERGUSON SYSTEM as it is known is on all tractors you see today.
Grey Ferguson Brown tractors were the first popular model and followed by the famous TE 20 tractor, this tractor was so simple to drive and operate and can be found in every town land all over the globe.
Harry was responsible for many inventions over many years including numerous implements, a well ahead of its time a 5 door hatchback car fitted with a form of ABS and electric windows no less, he also developed a 4WD system which was fitted to a racing track car and driven by Stirling Moss, the same system is also fitted to the classic car Jensen Incerpeter [Jensen ff].
So a brief history of Harry Ferguson proves that he was indeed one of Ireland’s greatest inventors and hence the opportunity for me to stand here today and sing his praises.
That is just a brief history about Harry Ferguson and indeed it would take more than one website to tell you his life story.
Who are we?
Initially a small group of Ferguson enthusiasts, we with assistance from the Midlands group Virginia Co. Cavan, are determined to create and produce a long overdue memorial for Ireland’s genius, Mr. Harry Ferguson, the man who turned agriculture on its head many years ago.
We started of by staging tractor events around the year 1999 to raise funds for the memorial project and we are still holding events at the Homestead every August. We finally achieved our goal in August 2008 and we are proud of the finished project in memory of our genius Harry Ferguson. We thank all those who have supported us in attending our events in the past and subsequently helped us raise the funds to complete this memorial garden at Growell Co Down.
The memorial garden is set opposite the Ferguson Homestead and exhibits a life size bronze statue of Harry and has the facility to display a Ferguson tractor on site plus information and history boards throughout the garden.
The memorial garden is designed so that photographs taken will include the homestead in background.
We hope you enjoy your trip through our website and we invite you to visit in person at any time throughout the year and take in the history information boards as you stroll up the memorial garden.