13-year-old tractor enthusiast gets her vintage Allis Chalmers ready for Tractor Fest  

A vintage Allis Chalmers tractor restored by a 13-year-old schoolgirl from Northallerton will be one of the highlights of Tractor Fest this summer.

A vintage Allis Chalmers tractor restored by Charlotte Wilson from Northallerton will be one of the highlights of Tractor Fest this summer.
A vintage Allis Chalmers tractor has been restored by Charlotte Wilson

The event, which will be held at Newby Hall in Ripon on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th June 2024, will display more than 1,000 vintage and modern tractors, 600 stationary engines, commercial vehicles, cars, trucks and motorcycles. 

60th birthday  

Charlotte Wilson and her dad Colin have been working hard to get their orange 1964 tractor ready for the Tractor Fest.   

The Allis Chalmers ED-40 tractor, which will be celebrating its 60th birthday during the event, spent its working life on a farm near Thirsk and was the last model manufactured by the UK subsidiary of the American Allis-Chalmers Corporation before it closed.   

Charlotte’s tractor is one of only nine tractors known to have been fitted with a Perkins engine as part of a short-lived trial.  

Tractor restoration runs in the family, as Charlotte inherited the tractor last year from her uncle and local farmer, the late Brian Chester, a former chair of the West Yorkshire group of the National Vintage Tractor and Engine Club (NVTEC) and founding member of Tractor Fest.  

Allis Pyjamas  

Charlotte, who got her first tractor, a Massey Harris Pony, when she was just seven years old, said: “Nicknamed ‘Allis Pyjamas’ by my young cousins who couldn’t say Allis Chalmers, the tractor is special to me because so few were made with this particular engine, and uncle Brian wanted to preserve it.    

“ED-40 tractors were normally fitted with a standard 23C engine, and we think it is the only tractor that is in preservation, so it is highly collectible.  

“I have been brought up with tractors and vintage machinery, often helping my mum and dad restore their latest projects.   

“The Allis Chalmers was minus its cab and didn’t run, so I have been working on adding a cab and starting it up again. There’s still a lot to do ahead of Tractor Fest, where it will be part of this year’s theme, the orange tractor.”

UK’s largest tractor show

Tractor Fest is the UK’s largest tractor show. Organised by the Yorkshire Vintage Association (YVA), the event is held over two days and is a firm favourite with enthusiasts and families.

Among this year’s highlights will be a display celebrating orange tractor marques, as well as harvesting and threshing machinery and an exhibition of vintage and modern European cars.

A host of entertainment, crafts, food and drink will be on offer at the show, and admission includes access to Newby’s gardens, adventure playground, dollshouse and teddy bear exhibitions.

Tractor Fest is sponsored by agricultural and machinery auctioneer Cheffins and Econ Engineering. The show is also supported by Ripon Farm Services.

Book your tickets here. More info about Tractor Fest is available here.

Find more events in our shows and events hub.

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