Traditional haymaking takes centre stage at Trim Haymaking Festival

Traditional haymaking takes centre stage at the annual Trim Haymaking Festival which takes place this Sunday, June 19.

Chief Organiser and local vet in Trim, Pat Farrelly, has said that the festival was originally started as a result of Ireland joining the EEC (now the EU) when there was a fear expressed by people that Ireland would lose its cultural identity.

“For the last 20 years, we’ve been running it as a haymaking festival. The hay is mowed in a traditional manner, with scythes and horse drawn mowers.

“The hay is then cocked in a traditional way. The event has attracted huge numbers of people over the years.”

The hay-making festival also has an All-Ireland sheaf tossing competition where Farrelly says people come from all over the country to compete and see.

The world record for sheaf tossing was created here two years ago when an 81 pound sheaf was tossed over a 62 foot bar.

“Michael O’Brien made that record and he went onto Australia where he competed in the world sheaf tossing championships.”

There are several other events on at the hay-making festival, including a donkey derby which Farrelly says is a national fun event.

There will also be a section of the festival which will be transformed into an old village seen, where there will be people in traditional costumes from days gone by as well as people darning and knitting.

The Chief Organiser of the festival said that there will also be dog shows and baby shows on the day as well as a ‘play-in-the-hay’ competition for children, which involves a number of obstacles that they have to meander through.

Admission to the event is €10 for adults, €5 for OAPs, children go free and there’s free car parking.