Shropshire Hay Meadow Day – Scythe Competition results

The Shropshire Hay Meadow festival took place on Saturday 15th July 2023 in Craven Arms. The event included competitions with both experienced and novice scythers taking part. As both the grass and weather forecast looked challenging the competition plots were reduced to 4 x 4 m (from 5 x 5 m).

As it turned out the weather was better than expected and the mowing wasn’t as bad as some predicted either, so some respectable times and qualities were recorded as you can see in the table below.

Peter Blackwell9500:548.5
Danny HodgsonE 8501:287
Jim McVittie*7502:317
Simon Cooter7502:275.5
Shayne O’Reilly*7503:176
Mike Towery6502:474
Jayne O’Reilly*7503:385
Andy Bryant**6503:465
Andy Hyde6004:135.5
Sarah Johnson**6503:103.5

Blades in cm, E = English; Time mins: secs; * = veteran; ** = novice

There were nearly as many awards in different categories as there was competitors.
Men: 1st Peter Blackwell (54secs), 2nd Danny Hodgson (1m28)
Women: 1st Jayne O’Reilly (3m38)
Veteran: 1st Jim McVittie (2m31), 2nd Shane O’Reilly (3m17)
Novice: 1st Andy Bryant (3m46), 2nd Sarah Johnson (3m10)
<75cm blade: Jim McVittie (who competed with a 75cm blade just so he could get an extra medal!)

There were four teams competing over 30 metres. The team winners were “The Novices” (1m50) pipping the favourites, “the SABI team” (1m58). It was a good job no one was checking quality!

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