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Suffolk Show 2019: Agriculture brought to life as farm machines roar into action

PUBLISHED: 14:18 31 May 2019 | UPDATED: 14:18 31 May 2019

Brian Barker at Farming Live at Suffolk Show 2019 as stewards watch the farm machinery display  Picture: SARAH CHAMBERS

Brian Barker at Farming Live at Suffolk Show 2019 as stewards watch the farm machinery display Picture: SARAH CHAMBERS

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Farming was brought boldly to life this week as the Suffolk Show launched its latest attraction.

Farming Live at Suffolk Show 2019 - stewards watch on as the farm machinery display gets under way  Picture: SARAH CHAMBERSFarming Live at Suffolk Show 2019 - stewards watch on as the farm machinery display gets under way Picture: SARAH CHAMBERS

Farming Live, headed up by pioneering farmer Brian Barker, of Westhorpe, new Stowmarket, roared into action as £1.3m worth of modern agricultural machinery took a turn on the Trinity Park showground.

With displays throughout the day to an hourly timetable, farmers demonstrated how modern agriculture works by putting combines and other farm machines through their paces and explaining the growing process.

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They wore specially-made T-shirts and jackets emblazoned with the slogan: 'Ask me I'm a farmer'.

"The whole concept was to bring farming to the general public at the show," said Brian.

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The purpose, he explained, was to fulfil the directive of the charity behind the Suffolk Show, the Suffolk Agricultural Association, to educate the public about farming and promote understanding of what farmers do.

Set by the Bucklesham entrance, opposite the fairground, the Farming Live displays greeted about 70% of show-goers who enter via that gate.

"The first thing they see as they move through that door is moving farm machinery," explained Brian.

"It's just phenomenal, seeing the faces of little children, parents, grandparents, seeing the machinery up close. We have had some fantastic questions - it proves the general public really do appreciate farming."

Brian hopes the display will become a show fixture for many years to come.

This year, Farming Live told the story of an oilseed rape crop, from sowing to harvest. A range of farmers offered insights into what they do at guest spots throughout the day, and visitors were treated to a display by a £450k combine harvester, supported by farm machinery makers CLAAS, which has its UK base at Bury St Edmunds.

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