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New venture for established farm dealership

An established farm machinery dealership in Somerset that helps farmers with their equipment needs has started a new venture supplying McCormick tractors.


With Richard Read (centre) are members of the McCormick team at Read Agriservices (from left): Brian Yeates, sales; Rex Vincent, parts; Mark Stevens, service; and Dick Bath, sales.

Richard Read of Read Agriservices, based at Wanstrow on the A359 between Frome and Bruton, believes the distinctive red and silver tractors will suit the dairy farms and mixed farming enterprises in his area, who increasingly want a power unit that is reliable and performs well but is also uncomplicated.

“There’s a growing feeling that a lot of tractors have become too complex,” he says. “Livestock farmers in particular, who rely on their tractors every single day, want a reliable machine that’s easy to use and comfortable to operate; the McCormick products fit that description perfectly.”

Read Agriservices has been awarded the franchise for McCormick compact and agricultural tractors by GB distributor AgriArgo UK. Area sales manager Steve Cann says the business is well-equipped to handle the product range: “Anyone in Somerset buying a McCormick tractor for farming or professional groundscare use will get a first-rate product and first-rate back-up,” he comments.

Richard Read has built up the business he started in 1971 by supplying an increasing range of equipment, fencing supplies and farm buildings, as well as tractors, with strong emphasis on customer service.

“We’ll continue to support our customers by drawing on our years’ of experience with our previous franchise while working to maintain our reputation as we attract new customers with the McCormick products,” he says. “Our parts manager Rex Vincent is starting to build a stock of McCormick parts and accessories in the stores, and our workshop staff, headed by Mark Stevens, who recently took over as service manager, will have specialist training on the products.”

In the sales office, Brian Yeates and Dick Bath have contacted regular customers and also McCormick users to make them aware of the new venture in a territory that extends from Bridgwater to Amesbury and from Bristol to Gillingham.

To the south, this area borders the McCormick territories of G A Vowles at Ilminster and Martin Richards Agricultural Engineers at Sturminster Newton; and P & D Engineering at Bredon to the north.

“We’ve had a positive response from farmers we’ve spoken to,” says Brian Yeates. “Existing McCormick users tell me the tractors are reliable, which is a key issue for dairy farmers, and there’s a good choice of models and specifications.”

From the X10 and GM series compacts starting at 22hp, the McCormick line-up also caters for livestock farmers with the 74hp to 110hp Perkins-engined C-Max and T-Max, and the new 92hp to 121hp X60 Series.

It then comprises the four-cylinder MC series with up to 126hp and higher specification hydraulics and transmission, then the 117hp to 141hp MTX series, which provides a proven six-cylinder package. The new X70 series spanning 145hp to 232hp is destined for larger farms and contractors wanting added power and performance.

“These tractors have all the features a livestock farmer finds useful but they are uncomplicated products, so they are easy to jump on and use,” says Dick Bath. “They’re ideal for serious commercial farmers buying a machine to do a job.”

Dairy farmer Nick Hutton agrees with that sentiment; as Read’s first McCormick customer he and his brother Ben recently took the keys of a 110hp X60.40 to work on their 600-acre farming enterprise at Witham Priory and its 280-cow dairy herd.

“We looked at similar tractors but preferred the McCormick,” he says. “It’s simple and functional, has a roomy cab with great visibility and the telescopic drawbar, which is standard, is great for hitching a trailer.”

The new McCormick is destined for a busy life on loader work, powering the feed wagon and tackling summer field jobs such as grass tedding and raking.

“The adjustable clutch response is a really good feature for the shuttle, I use it all the time,” says Nick Hutton. “You can have a sharp response for quick reactions or a slower, smoother action when you’re baling or rolling in the silage pit.

“It’s a stable little tractor for loader work, even without any ballast,” he adds. “And it’s also surprisingly smooth on the road.”

With only the non-cancelling indicator stalk and it’s horn button, which tends to get beeped whenever he climbs aboard, to criticise, Nick Hutton says he would as soon drive the new X60 as either of the other tractors in the yard.

“To be honest, I thought we were buying a lesser tractor for use around the buildings but that’s not the case,” he comments. “The X60 is nice to drive and it’s got good equipment; I’m really pleased with it.”

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