Trading for over 100 years, Chambers Agri Contracts Ltd is one of the largest contractors in the northern half of the country. From its base in Latton, Co. Monaghan, the family-run operation covers a wide area comprising counties Monaghan, Cavan, Louth and Meath as well as north county Dublin.
Chambers Agri Contracts Ltd has come a long way since Samuel Chambers started out with a humble horse threshing machine more than a century ago. Samuel’s grandson Richard now runs the business along with his sons Ivan and Gary, and wife Rosemary, who looks after the administration and bookkeeping end of things. Richard and Rosemary’s two daughters Rachel and Donna also help out in the office and on the farm respectively. “Everyone rows in,” Richard points out.
The Chambers offer an extensive range of services, including silage cutting, ploughing, reseeding, crop sowing and management together with harvesting, hedge and tree cutting, lime spreading, fertiliser spreading and excavation / drainage work. “Even though we have a slurry spreader, slurry spreading and baling are about the only things we don’t do.”
Committed to providing a top-class service and complete customer satisfaction, Chambers Agri Contracts Ltd has an array of machinery to carry out your work quickly and efficiently, providing you with value-for-money and an alternative to investing in your own expensive equipment. The company’s success can be attributed to the knowledge, experience, skill and expertise of its staff, which varies from seven to 15 depending on the time of year, as well as the quality of its machinery. Richard, Ivan, Gary and their highly-skilled team deliver the value and quality farmers expect from their agricultural contracting partner.
“We have built up a large and loyal customer-base over the years by providing them with a top-class service,” Richard explains.
“A lot of them are grain farmers in the Louth, Meath and north Dublin areas while closer to home, in Monaghan and Cavan, most of our customers are beef or dairy farmers.
“We also carry out a lot of lime spreading on contract for Roadstone in Meath and Dublin. We draw the lime from Roadstone’s Barley Hill Quarry near Kingscourt and have two Bredal lime spreaders and a couple of JCB 53-70 teleporters dedicated to this side of the business.
“We have a contract with the ESB for hedge and timber cutting as well and plant about 4,500 acres of winter and spring crops every year. These include wheat, barley, oats, beans and oilseed rape.”
The Chambers currently run a fleet of 12 tractors – five Fendt’s, four John Deere’s and three New Hollands. The Fendt models are 722, 724, 926, 930 and 939, which was purchased from Atkins Farm Machinery in 2018. In addition, they have two John Deere 6250Rs and two John Deere 6930s. Completing the impressive fleet are a New Holland TM155 and two New Holland 8560s, which are dedicated to hedge and timber cutting.
“There is a McConnel hedge-cutter with variable forward reach arm-set and telescopic and swivel head attached to the TM155, and Moffett Bushmaster hedge-cutters rigged up to the two 8560s,” Richard explains.
Some of the grass / crop harvesting machinery operated by the family include a Claas Jaguar 970 self-propelled harvester for silage and whole crop; a new John Deere T670 Hillmaster combine; a Claas Lexion 770T rotary with 30ft head; a set of Claas butterfly mowers; 50ft and 30ft Claas rakes; a Volvo loading shovel which is used on the silage pit; six Kane grain / silage trailers and three Donnelly silage trailers.
When it comes to tillage, the Chambers run two five-furrow Kverneland reversible ploughs; a new Kverneland seven-furrow trailed variable width plough; a Kverneland six-furrow mounted variable width; a new Lemken seven-furrow trailed plough; two Kuhn Accord 6m drills; a new Samco subsoiler; a six-row Samco maize sower which can lay three rows of plastic; an Accord maize sower with fertiliser.
One of the most impressive pieces of kit is a Horsch 6m combined grain and fertilised drill which they purchased in 2017 from Kelly’s of Borris in Co. Carlow. Powered by the massive Fendt 939, it is an awesome sight in action.
Asked why they chose a combined grain and fertilised drill over a standard drill, Ivan Chambers replied: “In the past few seasons, a few of our bigger customers asked us if we could offer a combined grain and fertiliser option. There are certain advantages to being able to offer such a service; fewer passes are required as you drop the grain and fertiliser at the same time, meaning less compaction; faster uptake of nutrients by the plant; and the ability to sow in a narrower window of suitable weather as you get two jobs done in one pass.”
Furthermore, there are three excavators (two Hitachi and one Yanmar) and a selection of dumpers and other similar plant. The tree surgery business, which Ivan runs during the winter months, is supplemented by a large wood chipper and a Greenmech mobile chipper which are fed by the diggers.
All machines are maintained and serviced regularly to avoid breakdowns and downtime. There is no such thing as a quiet time for this highly-regarded contractor who will work around the clock during peak times to keep clients happy.
“You have to be on the ball in this game. We work 24/7, if there’s rain on the way, we’ll work during the night to get the job done. You have to be true to your word. If you say you’ll do something tomorrow, you have to mean it. This is a competitive business and you have to give the customers what they want. We retain customers and attract new ones by offering a professional, reliable, clean and value-for-money service,” Richard continues.
“We would like to take this opportunity to thank our customers for their continued support. We would also like to thank Leinster Farm Machinery in Duleek, Meath Farm Machinery in Navan, Farmworks Machinery in Ballyboughal, Atkins Farm Machinery in Birr, Mid-Louth Garage in Ardee, IFM in Dunleer, Moffett Engineering in Clontibret, PJ Callan Ardee, Alexandra Mills in Benburb, Barry McKenna New Holland in Enyvale, Noel Kane trailers in Northern Ireland, Donnelly Trailers and the other main dealers we deal with for the excellent back-up service they provide.
”We also receive a great service from Dundalk Oil and Roe Oil, while have received support from AIB and Bank of Ireland on financing.”
Chambers Agri Contracts Ltd
Telephone: 042 9669187
First published in Irish Tractor & Agri magazine Vol 9 No 5, September/October 2021