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Tractor boys to make 10mph trip around the UK

By Western Gazette - North Dorset  |  Posted: April 20, 2012

  • TRACTOR TRIP: Sean Nixon of South Barrow with a tractor similar to the one he and his college friends hope to drive 2,000 miles around Britain for charity. Picture by Jennie Banks WGJB20120407D

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Pub talk is often forgotten once the morning-after hang-over kicks in.

But a student from South Barrow is close to turning his wacky bar-room brainwave of driving across Britain in a tractor into reality.

Agricultural student Sean Nixon, 19, was sinking a few pints in a pub near Harper Adams University College in Shropshire when he had his eureka moment.

His plan of driving 2,000 miles from Dover to Land's End, and then to John O'Groats and back on a 70-year-old tractor seemed fanciful.

Now with five of his agricultural college chums joining his hare-brained bid, he is just weeks away from setting off on a mad-cap mission to raise £10,000 for Help For Heroes.

"They say that most of the best ideas come up in the pub," he said. "We decided to travel the country on a tractor after a night on the beers in our local pub.

"We are all good friends and wanted to do something for charity and also see the country – this seemed like the perfect opportunity to mix the two. People think we are mad when we say what we are doing, but hopefully it will generate some interest because of that."

The tractor is expected to guzzle around £2,500 worth of fuel during the trip along minor roads across Britain.

Campsites will be home each night of the three-week trip, with the six lads taking turns behind the wheel of the 1940s vintage TE-20 Grey Ferguson.

Mr Nixon is a former pupil of King's School in Bruton and will be joined by fellow student farmers Richard Nelms, David Tumilty, Mike Brown, Andrew Mitchell and Sam Langley.

Their Facebook page already has more than 1,500 members and they are looking for people to donate online.

"King's School has always had a big connection with the forces as a lot of service families send their children there. It seemed the perfect charity to donate to," said Mr Nixon.

"It has taken a lot more organising than I realised, but we are very close now to getting everything in place.

"This is a big challenge, which requires more planning than just jumping on a tractor and setting off.

"We have been searching for sponsors to help our costs and to raise as much for the charity as possible.

"The target has been set at £10,000. If we can get close to that, it will be a tremendous achievement."

A support vehicle will be carrying jerry cans of fuel, helping the vehicle stock up in remote areas and transport the rest of the drivers.

They will set off from Dover Castle on Sunday, June 17, and head for Land's End. They will then travel north to the furthest point in Scotland before returning south at a painstaking 10mph.

They expect to arrive back at the home of one of their key sponsors, AGCO, in Coventry by Wednesday, July 4.

A long list of other sponsors have agreed to pay for fuel and spare parts to aid their efforts.

To help the team reach their fundraising target, visit www.justgiving.com/littlegreyfergie.

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  • cardinal_sin  |  April 20 2012, 3:23PM

    Sounds like a crazy idea. I'm certainly not behind them on this journey (at least I hope I'm not at just 10mph)!!!

  • benji15  |  April 20 2012, 12:21PM

    Everyone is always in such a rush these days, fair play to them.

  • johnskipper  |  April 20 2012, 11:50AM

    Excellent. Another tractor for us all to get stuck behind. Just what we wanted.