Ireland's Farm Machinery Website

Serving the Irish Farm Machinery Industry Since 1913

 
 

Tel: 045-409309

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The FTMTA Farm Machinery Show turns 30 

As the farm machinery trade and machinery users and enthusiasts alike eagerly await the return of the FTMTA Farm Machinery Show to Punchestown on February 7th to 9th, it is interesting to note that 2019 marks 30 years since the first such event was held by the Farm Tractor & Machinery Trade Association (FTMTA) in the RDS in 1989.

Ireland's premier farm machinery event is organised by the Farm Tractor & Machinery Trade Association (FTMTA) which is the representative body of the farm machinery industry in Ireland. The membership of the Association compromises in excess of 200 businesses engaged in the manufacture, distribution, retail sale and servicing of farm machinery. The Association is one of the longest established trade bodies in the country having existed in one form or another since 1913. The initial discussions about forming an Association took place between a group of Irish machinery businesses at the Smithfield Show in London and the formal founding of an organisation was at the Spring Show in Dublin the following year. With the passage of time, both shows have now long faded from the calendar while the FTMTA has developed as the representative of the Irish farm machinery trade and finally embarked on the organisation of its own show.

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On February 6th, 7th and 8th, 1989, the first Farm Machinery Show (as it was known until 2011) was held in the Simmonscourt Pavilion of the RDS in Dublin. The introduction of the Show by the Association was a reaction to growing dissatisfaction by the trade with the available existing exhibition facilities. The initiative was spearheaded by the then Shows Committee of FTMTA which included Geoff Daly, Shay Lynch and Pat Keogh and was chaired by John Perry.

The introduction of the Show was a major development by the Association and was a move not undertaken lightly but the step was vindicated by the success of the event which attracted an attendance of some 9,000 visitors and at which over 90% of available exhibition space was filled. The next Show in 1991 built on the solid foundations that had been laid and the organisers were able to fill all the available space with the number of visitors increasing by 2,000. By 1993 the attendance rose to approximately 13,500 people and the event was firmly established in the machinery sector's calendar.

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The growth of the Show over following years presented increasing challenges at the attractive but effectively city centre location of the RDS with growing traffic congestion in Dublin making access more difficult for visitors and exhibitors alike. Rising demand for exhibition space from new exhibitors combined with the increasing size of machinery also presented logistical difficulties at the Dublin site. It was clear by the early 2000's that the future sustainability and development of the machinery trade's own event depended of the Association securing the use of alternative facility.

In 2003 the Show relocated to the then newly built Punchestown Event Centre at  Punchestown Racecourse near Naas. Coincidently, FTMTA moved to a purpose built headquarters near Naas in 2007. The Punchestown venue has proved a very suitable home for the FTMTA Farm Machinery Show over the intervening years with the advantages of a large purpose built event centre, plenty of permanent parking space, an extensive tarmac area to facilitate the installation of marquees and to accommodate outdoor machinery displays and the infrastructural support of the racecourse facilities such as restaurants and toilets. The addition of a second permanent exhibition building at Punchestown in 2011 with the construction of the Trackside Pavilion further enhanced the facilities available to the Show as did the erection of the new Hunt Stand in 2018 which will house the first stands seen by visitors to this year's Show.

 

 

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The FTMTA Farm Machinery Show has now grown to become the flagship event of the Irish farm machinery industry: the Show is a three day indoor event and drew some 21,000 visitors to Punchestown in February of 2017. The 2019 Show will be the largest ever such event with some 170 individual exhibitors across over 200 distinct exhibits including indoor stands and outdoor display areas. The Show will cover approx 16,000 square metres (4 acres) of indoor exhibition space across four pavilions as well as a large area of outdoor display space. Over 8,000 square metres of heated indoor exhibition space will be provided in the two marquee pavilions alone which will be amongst the largest marquee structures erected in Ireland this year. The FTMTA views the provision of a dedicated, professional, machinery exhibition to showcase the products and services of the farm machinery industry as a very valuable service to the members of the Association and the wider sector and is happy that the Show has grown to fill this role since it was first extablished.  

The FTMTA Farm Machinery Show is underpinned by the ethos that it is organised by the trade for the farmer and the contractor and the Association believes that this is what has driven the success and growth of the Show over the years. In keeping with this philosophy, exhibitors must be genuinely agricultural focussed businesses and there is no duplication of exhibits or sub letting of stands permitted. Most of the leading national and international manufacturers active in the Irish market will have a presence at the Show with manufacturer personnel and product experts on hand to speak with visitors. The Association is grateful to the many repeat and new exhibitors who support each Show and acknowledge that it is ongoing this support that makes the Show attractive to visitors. The Show provides an opportunity for prospective buyers to view a comprehensive selection of competing machines of many various types in comfort and access a depth of information not available at other events.  

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A new dimension has been added to this year's Show with the introduction of "Working Wonders"; this public competition will select a tractor that most captures the public's imagination from a variety of well loved tractors in regular farming use. The winning criteria are ultimately a matter for those voting but are sure to include considerations such as the condition and presentation of the tractor as well as its suitability for the duties required of it.  

Six finalists were selected online by public vote over recent weeks and will be displayed at the entrance to the FTMTA Farm Machinery Show over the three days of the Show. Visitors to the Show will be able to cast their vote for the overall winner at the Working Wonders area as they exit the Show. The winner will be announced on the last day of the Show.

The overall winner will receive a voucher for €3,000 worth of tractors tyres from FTMTA member firm, and long time exhibitor at the FTMTA Farm Machinery Show, Agrigear Ltd. of Bailieborough, Co. Cavan. FTMTA are thankful to Agrigear for the generous sponsorship of the Wording Wonders competition.

Please contact the FTMTA on 045 409309 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you require any additional information in relation to the Show.