Charlotte Wilson and her vintage Allis Chalmers tractor
Charlotte Wilson and her vintage Allis Chalmers tractor

Schoolgirl’s vintage tractor marks 60th birthday at Tractor Fest

13 May 2024

A vintage Allis Chalmers tractor being restored by a schoolgirl tractor enthusiast from Northallerton will be on display at Tractor Fest, being held at Newby Hall, Ripon on 8-9 June 2024.

The orange 1964 tractor belongs to 13-year-old Charlotte Wilson who is renovating the tractor which is 60 this year with the help of her father, Colin.

The Allis Chalmers ED-40 tractor spent its working life on a farm near Thirsk and was the last model manufactured by the UK subsidiary of the American Allis-Chalmers Corporation before it closed. Charlotte’s tractor is one of only nine tractors known to have been fitted with a Perkins engine as part of a short-lived trial.

Tractor restoration runs in the family – Charlotte inherited the tractor last year from her uncle and local farmer, the late Brian Chester, a former chair of the West Yorkshire group of the National Vintage Tractor and Engine Club (NVTEC) and founding member of Tractor Fest.


Charlotte said:

Nicknamed ‘Allis Pyjamas’ by my young cousins who couldn’t say Allis Chalmers, the tractor is special to me because so few were made with this particular engine and Uncle Brian wanted to preserve it. ED-40 tractors were normally fitted with a standard 23C engine, and we think it is the only tractor that is in preservation so its highly collectable.

I have been brought up with tractors and vintage machinery, often helping my Mum and Dad restore their latest projects. Tractors are my passion and I got my first tractor, a Massey Harris Pony, when I was just seven years old.

The Allis Chalmers was minus its cab and didn’t run so I have been working on adding a cab and starting it up again. There’s still a lot to do ahead of Tractor Fest where it will be part of this year’s theme – the orange tractor.


The vintage Allis Chalmers tractor being restored by Charlotte Wilson
The vintage Allis Chalmers tractor being restored by Charlotte Wilson


Taking place on Saturday 8 and Sunday 9 June 2024, Tractor Fest will showcase more than 1,000 vintage and modern tractors, 600 stationary engines, commercial vehicles, cars, trucks and motorcycles.

Among this year’s highlights will be a display celebrating orange tractor marques, as well as harvesting and threshing machinery and an exhibition of vintage and modern European cars.

Tractor Fest is the UK’s largest tractor show. Organised by the Yorkshire Vintage Association (YVA), the event is held over two days and is a firm favourite with enthusiasts and families.

A host of entertainment, crafts, food and drink will be on offer at the show and admission includes access to Newby’s gardens, adventure playground, dollshouse and teddy bear exhibitions.

Tractor Fest is sponsored by Europe’s leading agricultural and machinery auctioneer Cheffins and Econ Engineering. The show is also supported by Ripon Farm Services.


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