Claydon, the European market leader in direct strip seeding technology, has further expanded its UK distribution network with the appointment of well-known and highly respected agricultural dealer Oakes Bros. Ltd. The company will sell and support the full range of Claydon Opti-Till® products in southern central England through its four depots, which are located at Micheldever (Hampshire), Coombe Bissett (Wiltshire), East Ilsley (Berkshire), and Horsham (West Sussex).

Established in 1825, Oakes Bros. sells a wide range of new and used tractors, combines and agricultural machinery across an area from Brighton to Bournemouth on the South coast, including the Isle of Wight, and from London to Oxford and Swindon. The company, which is a main dealer for both JCB and New Holland, has now added Claydon to its portfolio of prestigious franchises.

At the heart of the Claydon Opti-Till® System, the Hybrid drill incorporates a unique leading tine technology that delivers exceptional versatility in all climatic conditions, soil types and crops. In addition to a comprehensive range of tractor-mounted and trailed Hybrid drills from 3m to 8m wide, the Claydon product line includes Straw Harrows from 3m to 15m and the 6m TerraStar® light rotary cultivator. The latest addition is the TerraBlade inter-row hoe in widths from 3m to 8m, which helps growers to control weeds in band-sown crops more efficiently and more effectively than chemicals alone, with significant cost and environmental benefits.

Richard Haines, Managing Director of Oakes Bros., states: “Claydon is an excellent example of fantastic British engineering, a well-established, highly regarded company which develops and manufactures new and exciting technology. It represents a great addition to our portfolio of British-made products, which include New Holland tractors manufactured in Basildon and JCB Fastrac models produced at Cheadle.

“We are delighted to be taking on the Claydon Opti-Till® range because it will help our customers to meet the challenges of farming at a time when controlling production costs is a priority and there is an increasing need to improve soil health. They will appreciate the fact that Claydon products are designed by farmers, manufactured to an exceptionally high standard, very versatile and eliminate the need to operate more than one drill.

“In an area dominated by arable farming the key advantage of the Claydon Hybrid is that it is a tine drill which will operate successfully across a wide range of situations. Its simple, strong design and great flexibility allows it to establish any crop that can be air sown, in any soils, from Hampshire flint and Downland brash to Oxford clay and greensand. It can be used for autumn or spring sowing, will cope with wet or dry conditions, can be specified with a split hopper design so that fertiliser can be applied at drilling, and operates accurately, reliably, and inexpensively.

“With more frequent extremes of weather, Opti-Till® is particularly relevant because it is effective in all conditions, minimises risk and provides sufficient capacity to exploit narrow weather windows. This means that all agricultural seeds which can be air-sown, from herbs and grasses to cereals and maize, can be drilled at the right time, in the right conditions and ultimately produce the high yields required to make farming businesses more resilient.

“Since we announced the addition of Claydon to our portfolio the response has been amazing, with both existing and potential Claydon customers calling us to find out more and book demonstrations. We are seeing interest from a wide range of farming businesses, from 300-acre mixed farms to 3000-acre arable estates, all of whom are looking to reduce establishment costs.

“To enable potential customers to see Claydon products operating on their own farms we have added a 4m Hybrid mounted drill, 6m TerraStar® light rotary cultivator and 4m TerraBlade to our demonstration fleet, with a Straw Harrow to follow in the autumn. These will be available throughout our trading area via our group demonstrator, supported by Charlie Eaton, Claydon’s Territory Manager for the South and West of England.

“As a very customer-focused business we have ensured that all of our sales and after-sales staff have been fully trained in the Claydon Opti-Till® System and we can supply spare parts for existing Claydon machines operating in our trading area.

“I and all of the Oakes Bros. team have been impressed by every aspect of our dealings with Claydon in establishing this relationship and look forward to working closely with them to develop this new side of our business.”

Rob Dunk, Claydon’s Sales Manager – UK and ROI, adds: “This is an exciting development for Claydon as it represents a key milestone in our strategy of offering Claydon Opti-Till® products to customers through a network of carefully selected, enthusiastic, professional dealers. Oakes Bros. have an excellent spread of depots, dedicated sales teams at each location and a strong focus on customer relationships, so this is an extremely positive development for existing and potential Claydon owners.

“Farming businesses of all sizes and types, including those in the dairy sector, are increasingly recognising the financial, operational and environmental benefits of the Claydon Opti-Till® System. It is particularly relevant now because of the significant opportunities to save money, combined with massive improvements in soil health and structure, lower carbon emissions, reduced soil erosion and environmental benefits which are in line with the likely future requirements of the Environmental Land Management Schemes