'Plough service' to bring fortune for Pudleston farmers

LIKE the generations before them, Hatfield farmers will hoist a 100-year-old horse plough onto the alter of their parish church for a traditional ‘plough service’ on January 12.

As part of the annual service, the congregation will ask for a little help for the year ahead; be that rain, shine, a healthy flock, or a good crop.

Since bringing back the traditional ceremony 12 years ago, the people of Pudleston have used the old-fashioned plough for their service, provided by a local farmer.

The plough takes three men to wheel into the church before being lifted into its place on the alter ahead of the ceremony.

Years ago, however, farm workers would also bring in their own spades or tools on the second service of the year for the plough service.

It would mark the time when, having rested over Christmas, work would once again begin in the fields.

And the ceremony would give farmers a chance to ask for good conditions for the year ahead.

This year’s service will start at 10:30am, with a cup of tea and a snack afterwards for anyone who wants to attend.

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