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Young Berkshire farmer makes plea to road users to 'Think Tractor Factor' during harvest

Harvest lasts about seven weeks and Newbury farmer Eleanor Gilbert has made a plea to motorists and cyclists for their patience and understanding.

During harvest season you will see almost every farm worker, tractor, combine, trailers and large farm equipment mobilising on Britain’s roads.

They are travelling farm to farm to harvest crops that will then appear in supermarkets, restaurants and all food outlets to feed the population.

Eleanor setting off in one of the large farm vehicles
Eleanor setting off in one of the large farm vehicles

Eleanor Gilbert from Rookery Farm, Newbury, said: "Every year we face frustrated and angry drivers who are not expecting to see so much large machinery on the road at all times of the day and night.

"But we would love for you to get behind us and help bring in the harvest.

"You can help us by not trying to jump in between convoys or pass us on narrow roads."

Berkshire Farm Girl Eleanor Gilbert
Berkshire Farm Girl Eleanor Gilbert

Her plea to motorists is to please leave extra time for your journeys during the next seven weeks or so.

She is particularly concerned about motorbikes and cyclists who often dodge in and out of huge machinery and who are often invisible to the driver.

Eleanor said: "When we travel in convoy, we all communicate via CB radios so when we spot a cyclist, motorbike or dangerous driver trying to bypass at a dangerous junction we can try and make everyone aware.

"We always have an escort driver travelling with the combine harvester, this will display wide vehicle signs and is there to warn oncoming traffic to slow down or even pull over as quite often there is not enough room for the combine and another vehicle."

Combine harvesters are accompanied by a second vehicle to warn other road users
Combine harvesters are accompanied by a second vehicle to warn other road users

Eleanor, who is also known as Berkshire Farm Girl and as a young ambassador for the future of farming has built up quite a following on social media, said: "Before you set off on any journey over the next few weeks anticipate large machinery at any point.

"We really appreciate it when you can pull over and let us through as sometimes we are facing difficult weather conditions meaning we only have a very tight window to catch a crop.

"Farmers do not go home for meals during the summer and can sit in machinery for very long hours in remote places to bring in the harvest.

"We would love your support in bringing in the British harvest."

She added: "A cheery smile thumbs up or even a piece of cake dropped off at your local farm goes a long way to keep this hard-working sector going during this incredibly busy time."

Think Tractor Factor during harvest
Think Tractor Factor during harvest

She has come up with the slogan THINK TRACTOR FACTOR.

"Leave extra time for your journey, travel slower and let’s make sure everyone gets home safe this summer and the harvest is gathered in order to put food on your tables."

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