Keeping the age old tradition of hedgelaying alive

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Green fingers were twitching in Nash last week at the North West Bucks Agricultural Association’s annual hedgelaying competition.

Milton Keynes Council leader Andrew Geary and his brother, and fellow cabinet member, Peter were putting their farming skills to good use as they competed.

Andrew and Peter Geary hedgelaying in Nash

Andrew and Peter Geary hedgelaying in Nash

“It’s completely different to my other job,” joked Andrew as he hammered stakes into the ground. “They’re completely contrasting too. You’re on TV talking politics one day, and you’re outside laying a hedge the next.

“It was a big hedge and has taken a lot of doing.

“Given what the hedge was like at the start, I’m happy with it.

“I love being outside and I love the rural life. My father and grandfather both did it, so we’re carrying it on through the generations.”

Former hedgelaying champion turned judge Roy Hawkins and was pleased to see the competition held and the tradition continued.

He said: “A few more are doing it nowadays but it’s a dying trade.

“They mainly do it with tractors now. These competitions help keep it going too.”

One of the younger competitors Sam said: “I’ve been going with my dad ever since I was a kid because I used to get off school.

“It’s a nice passion to have because, at the end of the day, you can look back over it and see what you’ve done.”