Back in the days of making hay while the sun shone, and the agricultural machinery industry thrived, one of the leading firms was Bamfords of Utoxeter. In recent times they were best known for stationary engines. They were also makers of machinery for making hay, implements like tedders, side rakes and swath turners. Sometimes they were combined into a single machine like the one on the left.

Swath turners were used to turn and invert cut grass, hay or straw and aerating a ‘windrow’ (swath) to condition it. As the horse-drawn machine was pulled along it kicked the grass in the air, aerating it but maintaining its position in the field.

Later they were replaced with tractor drawn equipment fitted with a conveyor and turning device.

This model by Brian Young of the Guild of Model Wheelwrights of a Bamford machine was displayed at Bristol in 2015. In this case the model is rather more model engineering than many productions by model wheelwrights with the only wood involved being the horse shafts.

Brian Young’s