Meet the man driving a tractor 270 miles from Cornwall to Codicote

David Monk

David will be driving this tractor more than 500 miles to help raise money for charity - Credit: David Monk

A former Welwyn Garden City resident is planning to drive more than 500 miles in a 50-year-old old tractor to raise money for charity.

David Monk will be setting off from his home town of St Austell, Cornwall, then driving all the way to the Whitwell Steam Fair in Codicote and back to raise funds for the Motor Neurone Disease charity, in memory of a colleague who died from the disease.

David Monk

David said most of the 540 mile round trip will be driven at around 14 mph - Credit: David Monk

The 62-year-old, who works as a gardener, used to work at the Gosling stadium - where he passed his test when he was 17 on the very same model of tractor he will be driving to the fair.

David will leave St Austell on June 22 and arrive back on July 1, stopping off at Honiton, Andover and Aylesbury on his way to the event on June 26.

"I've done 50 miles in a day before, but I'll be doing roughly 90 miles in a day," David said.

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"It does roughly 20 miles to the gallon, so not too bad. There's probably cars on the road that do less than that now! There's more than enough for me to do 200 on a tank."

David Monk

David will be towing a trailer for the entire journey to help raise money - Credit: David Monk

In preparation for the journey the old tractor has had new tyres put on, oil and filters replaced and had the entire vehicle rewired to avoid any potential breakdowns.

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With a top speed of 18pmh, David will be setting off each day as soon as the sun rises to make sure he can cover all the distance in time.

There's no radio to keep him entertained on the long journeys but he doubts he could hear it, describing the noise the tractor makes as "quite deafening".

While he's not allowed on the motorway, David is allowed to drive on dual carriageways as long as he has a flashing light on the tractor

"I've been a tractor fan since about the age of three," David told this paper.

He was inspired to complete the journey after he met a lady in her 70s who had driven from Land's End to John O'Groats in a tractor which was 'much older and much slower' than his own.

He added: "Not only will I have a fun week or two driving a tractor but hopefully it will raise some money for a good cause."

David has launched a JustGiving page, having surpassed his target of £500 already. To donate visit

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