Commercials at 33rd Working Rally

The 33rd working rally of the Ouse Valley Group Vintage Tractor Club on Saturday and Sunday 26 and 27 September at St Judes Farm, Haynes in Bedfordshire, by kind permission of the Simms Family, was a great success, with hot sunny weather and dry ground, writes Donald Bowler.
Over 150 vintage tractors were there, with many taking part in the ploughing competition. There were also 30 commercials and military and 10 steam vehicles.
A 1952 Chevrolet 3800 LWB Pickup taking part had been owned by a farming family in the States until 2005 when it was imported into the UK and stored. Matthew Davies of Ampthill bought it recently and intends to keep it exactly as it is.
WH Smith of Houghton Conquest was showing his 1954 Fordson Thames ET6 breakdown wagon that spent its working life with the RAF at Cardington, where the airship sheds are still located.
Among the other military vehicles was R Flavell of Newport Pagnell s ex-WD 1941 AEC Matador Gun Tractor. Fitted with an AEC 95hp six-cylinder diesel engine, the 7 3/4-ton vehicles had a top speed of 30mph.
D Stewart of Toddington had his 1953 Commer Flatbed FC type. It was new to PC Bath of Roxton Park in Beds; it then went to J Parrish in Shefford and was used to cart sugar beet.
Mounted on the platform was a TS3 ported two-stroke diesel, horizontally opposed piston engine, which was fitted to later Commer models from 1954. Mr Stewart started the TS3 up in the ring and its unsilenced exhaust bark really was incredible. The TS3 was developed by Tillina
Stevens before being taken over by Rootes in 1951.
The biggest Military vehicle present was Charles Pateman of Holbeach s 1943 Ex-US Army 6-ton cargo chassis 6×6 Mack NM6 Wrecker. After its demob, it was used by Fred Cross Lorry Breakers for towing-in and was also used as a snow plough in Scotland. The combat Series’were the first military 6×6 trucks built by Mack. The US didn t build any Mack NM recovery vehicles though, so it is likely that the Holmes WD45 recovery equipment came from a Diamond T 969.
Something a little different was Phil Moffat and his son Harry having a go at ploughing with Phil s 1970 series 2A Land Rover and a 2-furrow Ransomes plough. The 2010 rally is on the 25 and 26 September.