National Vintage Tractor and Engine Club North Somerset Group

A bit of History

Much of the information below has been reproduced by kind permission of Mr Hector Hamer, the first group chairman, who compiled a "brief history" of the club some years ago.

It was at the Cheddar Steam Rally in 1972 that it became clear that there was sufficient interest in restoring old tractors in the North Somerset area to think about forming a regional club. The National Vintage Tractor and Engine Club (which had originated as the Fordson Vintage Owners Club) was approached regarding the setting up of a regional group and on 13th September 1972 the inaugural meeting was held at the Railway Hotel in Yatton. Allan Condie attended as a representative of the NVTEC Executive and after observation of the necessary formalities, the North Somerset Group was formed with Hector Hamer as founder Chairman and David Pilkington as secretary/treasurer.

From an initial membership of 12 or so, numbers grew rapidly, such that by 1973 there were 70 or more attending the meetings, which featured talks by members and invited guests as well as the necessary discussions to organise future club rallies and ploughing matches.

The first tractor rally the club organised (at Cheddar in 1973) was washed out both days. 1974 however proved much more satisfactory, with fine weather and a reasonable attendance by the public. In 1975, Malcolm Fleet proposed a John O' Groats to Land End tractor run. Malcolm, together with John Higgins and Roy Hill, covered the journey in 10 days, raising over £1000 for the Spina Bifida Fund.

In December 1977, Denzil Horler became chairman, with Malcolm Fleet as Secretary, Bob Bell as Treasurer and John Thomas as Membership Secretary. Denzil held this position for 20 years, along with Bob Bell and John Thomas, while the Secretaries came and went!

Our current Chairman, Kevin Patch, took over the reins in November 1997 and Denzil became Honorary Life President. At this time Margaret Young acted as Secretary and Eve Ralfs as Membership Secretary.


[Lots more to go here when I get the time - Webbie]

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