The National Ploughing Championship take place in the grounds of Rockwell College in County Tipperary.

The high attendance at this year's championship is reflective of the growing number of farmers taking up tillage. Thousands came from throughout the country to watch the competition. Three counties from Northern Ireland were represented and twenty two counties from the south. 

Ploughing in the Championship isn't just a matter of dashing out to the field and turning sod. It's a delicate affair...

Former champion Joe Shanahan from Wexford at work turns over a few feet of sod at a time, makes a few adjustments to the tractor and continues.  Another former champion from Dublin, Willie Murphy, is proof that you do not need modern equipment to win the competition. His tractor is ten years old and his plough is nearly double that. Former world champion, Charlie Keegan from Enniskerry in County Wicklow, was not very happy with his performance and blamed the plot of land that he had to plough.  

Ploughing is not the only attraction at the event, with machinery exhibitors reporting strong business and many farmers getting to see new machinery being demonstrated for the first time.

Farmers weren't coming just to drool over machinery they would like to buy. One exhibitor said we like to see people with mud on their boots. We know they come to buy not like the people at the shows with their shiny shoes.  

One of the star attractions was a modern windmill made by a firm in Ballyhale, County Kilkenny. Fifteen of these windmills have already been sold at a price of a thousand pounds. The windmill is used to pump water long distances and even at low wind speeds, it can pump a hundred gallons an hour. 

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 20 October 1977.