Almost 400 people attended the National Ploughing Association’s formal unveiling of Ratheniska, Stradbally, Co Laois, as the host venue for the 2013 National Ploughing Championships on Sept 24, 25 and 26 next, bridging a 70-year gap since the event was last held in the area.
The launch took place in Heritage Golf & Spa Resort in Killenard, Emo, Co Laois. David Carter and his family will be the main landowners with many neighbouring farmers providing ploughing and parking ground to meet the requirement of 700 acres for this huge National and International Event.
The economic impact of the Ploughing Championships in 2011 was a staggering €36m. Early indications suggest that this central Laois location just off the N80 and M7 will draw an even bigger attendance than this year’s 187,000.
NPA managing director, Ms Anna May McHugh, said: “I’m obviously delighted that the ploughing is coming to my home county next year and I am really looking forward to working with the people of Ratheniska, Stradbally and Laois to make this one of our best events yet.”
Ratheniska last hosted the event in 1943. Since then the championships were also held in Ballacolla, Co Laois in 1995, 2000 and 2002. Next year will mark the fifth time for the National Ploughing Championships to take place in the O’Moore County.
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