Market Lavington Museum

Side rakes for sale – 1955

In 1954, Wordleys, the agricultural engineering business in Market Lavington, advertised the range of machinery they had for sale in a local directory.

We see evidence of their sales of haymaking machinery in their records of sales, which includes a page concerning the side rakes and tedders sold in early 1955. The side rakes gathered the cut hay into windrows. The tedder turned the hay, so that it all had a good chance to dry out thoroughly before being collected and stored in a haystack or bales.

The accounts include two columns with prices. The first shows the purchase price paid by the engineers to acquire the machines, whilst the second shows the sale price, paid by the customer. For example, the popular Vicon side rakes cost the firm £93.10s, but were sold for £110. Obviously, the business needed to make a profit, some of which would be needed to pay their bills and the wages of their employees. (In 1986, there were twenty six people working for Wiltshire Agricultural Engineering.)

Amongst the purchasers of the hay rakes, we see two from the local villages of Urchfont and Poulshot. Other machines went further afield, to Box and Dorchester.