Young farmer tells FUW leaders about his globetrotting tractor work

Following in the footsteps of Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie after she visited war-ravaged refugees in a camp near Turkey's border with Syria is just one of a string of memorable recent experiences for Meirionnydd farmer's son Will Ellis.

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Will poses for a picture with farmers in Ethiopia

Will, the 25-year-old son of Farmers’ Union of Wales members Hefin and Sue Ellis, of Hafod Olau, Islaw’r Dref, near Dolgellau, was working in Turkey in his globetrotting role as an international product technical specialist with CNH, a world leader in the agricultural and construction equipment businesses.

On a rare visit home to the family farm, he recalled the work he did in Turkey recently was incredibly interesting. “I was based near the border with Syria, where there was a large refugee camp, and UN special envoy Angelina Jolie had been there only the previous week,” he added.

Although based at the CNH UK Ltd headquarters in Basildon, Essex, Will travels the world visiting dealerships, companies and individual farmers giving advice and supervision and carrying out repairs on tractors.

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Emyr Jones (furthest right) greets Will Ellis on a rare visit home earlier this month with Huw Jones (furthest left) and Owain Thomas

This year, apart from Turkey, he has already visited Italy, Japan, Sierra Leone, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Ivory Coast and France and during 2012 he visited Ethiopia, Austria, Jordan, Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar, Mauritius, South Korea, Japan, Egypt and France.

After attending Ysgol y Gader, Dolgellau, Will studied at Reaseheath College in Nantwich. Periods working for tractor and agricultural machinery dealerships followed before he spent 18 months working for a John Deere dealership in Australia.

On his return from “Down Under” in 2008 he worked for four years with a Case dealership in Shrewsbury and saw a job advertised in the Farmers Weekly for CNH at Basildon. “I got that job – with a healthy sprinkling of luck!” he said.

Following a year as a technician, he was promoted to his current role with the company that employs 33,800 people worldwide and has a network of approximately 11,500 dealers in approximately 170 countries. Its 37 manufacturing facilities are located throughout Europe, North America, Latin America and Asia.

During his flying visit home earlier this month, Will met FUW president Emyr Jones, Meirionnydd county executive officer Huw Jones and county chairman Owain Thomas.

Afterwards, Huw Jones said: “Will has undoubtedly got ambition and drive and is an incredibly able individual to carry out such a skilful task.

“He is often asked to take flights out to these countries on very short notice and to provide specialist advice and electronic diagnostic training to people with a very primitive way of life. In addition, he has to work with people with a very limited knowledge of English and work through an interpreter.

“He is very often faced with incredibly long journeys to reach farmers and dealerships and will have to make important decisions on his own account without the normal back-up and mobile phone signal which he would get in the UK.

“Undoubtedly, his experience in the Australian Outback has been of great benefit to him. He has specialist knowledge of Case Maxxum and Puma tractors and also the New Holland T6 and T7.

“The experience he gains through this work will be of immense benefit for him in future and he values greatly the experience of meeting different people in difficult and sometimes hostile environments.”

Emyr Jones said: “It was a great privilege to meet Will and to discuss his achievements. He emphasised how much he looks forward to coming home to see his family.

“He certainly needs to be warmly congratulated on his outstanding achievement, his incredible career progression and we wish him well for the future.”

 

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