Balmoral Show: Ferguson tractor that Harry Ferguson himself drove on display

Arthur Halligey with the 1938 Ferguson tractor
Arthur Halligey with the 1938 Ferguson tractor

The star attraction in a 150th anniversary exhibition at Balmoral Show is a tractor driven by a very famous inventor.

Arthur Halligey, 70, from Comber, a volunteer guide at Balmoral Show, explained: “This 1938 Model A Harry Ferguson tractor was built at one of David Brown’s factories in Huddersfield.

“It was delivered to John Murphy in Hillsborough. Harry Ferguson, the famous inventor from Northern Ireland, actually drove this particular tractor in about 1940.”

Beside the famous tractor is a scale model built by a 12-year-old in 1950.

The exhibtion also features many archives photos from the show.

The journey for Balmoral Show started back in 1854 when the North East Agricultural Association of Ireland was formed, with the first shows being held at Belfast Corporation Markets (now the Markets area of Belfast) from 1855 to 1895.

The Balmoral Showgrounds were purchased in 1894 and the first show held there in 1896.

The show relocated to Balmoral Park in Lisburn in 2014, but the core of the show has remained the same with local agriculture and food remaining central.

Arthur said: “People are recognising themselves and friends in the various photographs in the displays which is nice.

“The machinery has changed quite a bit but farming is still farming.”

Other artefacts included in the exhibition are old rosettes and programmes, and there is also some archive footage of the show on screens throughout.

The anniversary display marquee is located behind the Eikon Exhibition Centre at the junction opposite the NI Food Pavilion.