Photos from Gawdy Hall Estate in the '50s

Fordson Major purchased from JJ Wright of Dereham, with mounted triple K spring tine set of drag harrows.

IH Farmall H with set of drag harrows.

Loading Fisons compound fertiliser into a Massey Harris combine drill.

Fordson Dexta drilling sugar beet with Webb five-row mounted drill.

Harvesting in the '50s - involving 3x Fordson Majors and a Ransomes threshing drum - plus 10 men. An IH B-450 is in the background.

New in 1952, the Massey Harris pick-up baler is in operation at the rear of the threshing drum - the string tying mechanism gave a considerable amount of trouble!

New in October 1951, this Fowler VF was taken off ploughing with a four-furrow trailer plough and used to pull the sugar beet trailer. The single row harvester being powered by the largest of the Estates wheeled tractors, an International Farmall M - a 1940s tractor which at some point had been fitted with a Perkins Diesel engine - "A dozen skilled farm-workers couldn't keep pace with a mechanical marvel like this ..."

The Fowler was chosen in preference to an Allis Chalmers crawler because the latter had difficulty in pulling the existing four-furrow plough at an acceptable speed.

Off-loading the beet onto a railway truck at Harleston station. In the 1948/9 season, 144 railway trucks were loaded by hand - each holding around 10 tonnes each.

Later the beet was carted by the Estates own Bedford lorry. Being loaded here by a Cooks petrol-engined elevator.

The book about "The History of Gawdy Hall & Its Occupants - including a snap-shot of estate operations in the mid 20th Century" is available from us or buy online with PayPal at