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October 05, 2009

Castledermot Vintage Day raises €24,000

Castledermot Vintage Day raises €24,000 for Irish Haemophilia Society

Suzanne Corcoran, Secretary of Castledermot Vintage Club, reports that €24,000 was raised for the Irish Haemophilia Society as a result of Castledermot Threshing & Vintage Working Day, held on Sunday, 27th September 2009 at Castledermot, Co. Kildare. 

Joe Fennelly’s Steam Ploughing Engine in Action “We are absolutely overwhelmed with the amount raised, as we were conscious that it would be difficult to fundraise during a recession”, says Suzanne. “It just shows that people out there are still willing as ever to think of others, and we would like to thank everyone for their generosity.  In particular, the club would like to thank all its sponsors, exhibitors, steam engine owners, and volunteers for their ongoing support”.

Ploughing with Steam Plough Engines Attendance this year exceeded 5,000 people, who enjoyed the sights of yesteryear, with traditional threshing, over 20 steam engines, vintage farm machinery, tractors, trucks, cars and motorcycles.  There was a large working area, with a Doe Tractor ploughing, as well as the unusual site of ploughing with steam engines.  In addition, there was tractor pulling races with two sleighs, with some steam engines taking part in the pulling also. 

Castledermot Vintage Club members and volunteers 2009

There truly was something for all tastes and interests with traditional crafts such as hand weaving, the making of copper tools, crafts demonstration by the ICA, a blacksmith making horse shoes, the dismantling and reassembly of a Ferguson tractor in under 19 minutes, and lots more, such as dancing, music, plant and flower stall, cake sales, book and bric and brac sales.  Children were entertained with a funfair, pony rides, pet farm, competitions to win a goldfish, face painting, sponge-throwing, a clown and more.

The Club chose the Irish Haemophilia Society as the beneficiary this year, in memory of David Sixsmith, Palatine, Carlow, who passed away in March this year.  The event was a poignant tribute to David, and was attended by many of his friends and colleagues.  In particular, over 20 steam engines attended on the day, operated by those who knew David well as a fellow steam enthusiast.  The Club would like to especially thank Norman Sixsmith and Marlene Sixsmith for their support and encouragement.

This year saw the biggest event yet for Castledermot, and the Club hopes to continue its success in the future.  “We were thrilled with the turnout this year.  It’s fantastic to be a part of it”, states Suzanne, “we just love the whole vintage scene, the steam engines, the community spirit, everything about it.  And we get to raise money for charity at the same time”.  A substantial €74,000 has been raised for charity since the club formed in July 2007, a tremendous achievement for a young club.