Farmer Focus: My wish for the perfect lorry driver came true

A year ago I wrote a very tongue-in-cheek piece about my wishes for the perfect lorry driver.

Today I have loaded some beans for Frontier and I can say it was the perfect process.

They emailed and texted well in advance about the collection date. I received a phone call from their driver with an accurate time of arrival.

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The lorry arrived bearing a large photo of one of their grain traders. (It was not our grain trader – he may not be good looking enough. Only joking, Russell.)

The lorry was parked exactly where I asked. Loading took just minutes, with a jolly pip of the horn when the required tonnage was in.

The icing on the cake was the number plate on the cab dash bearing the nickname of the driver: Sazzles.

I was proud to hear from her that after a year in the job she has received overwhelming friendliness in the whole grain chain.

The cherry on the top was a text an hour later to say the beans had been tipped at Tilbury with ideal moisture and low admixture.

Plough Sunday

The Essex farming fraternity turned out in force for the annual Plough Sunday service at the beautiful and historic Thaxted church.

It had everything: colourful Morris dancers who pulled a horse-drawn plough into the centre of the church, modern ploughs outside which were blessed by the bishop, and a very spectacular procession at the end of the service by 27 tractors driven by members of Essex Young Farmers.

This was the first time they have done a tractor run but looking at the popularity of the event, it will be an annual fixture.

Hundreds of pounds were raised for the air ambulance and the Farming Crisis Network.

It was a positive and uplifting display to all onlookers who hooted and clapped in support as they went along the roads.

I enjoyed the bit in the service when our rural dean, Janet, observed that of course not all farmers plough these days.

She agreed, though, that Zero Till Sunday probably didn’t have the same ring as Plough Sunday.