Loyal David follows in family footsteps

NO SIGN OF RETIREMENT: David Eady has been working at Shimpling Park Farm for 50 years.
NO SIGN OF RETIREMENT: David Eady has been working at Shimpling Park Farm for 50 years.

A farm worker is hoping that following in the footsteps of his ancestors will see him come face to face with royalty.

David Eady is due to be given a long service award at the Suffolk Show today after chalking up 50 years of work at Shimpling Park Farm.

Mr Eady is the third generation of his family to work at the farm. His father, Bill, spent 52 years working on the land and his grandfather, George, 56 years.

Each were presented with awards for their loyalty at the annual show, with George having the honour of meeting the Queen in 1957 and Bill receiving his award from Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1979.

Officials have confirmed that Prince Harry, pictured, will be attending the event and Mr Eady, from Alpheton, has his fingers crossed the trend will continue.

“It would just round things off nicely for me,” said the 64-year-old.

“My invite says the award will be presented by a special guest and that could be Harry.”

Mr Eady is no stranger to run-ins with royalty. When he was given his 40-year service award, it was Princess Ann doing the duties.

He says that even before his first steps, he was destined to go into farming and started after leaving school in 1964.

“From day one, probably since I could crawl and was living with my father, I wanted to follow in his footsteps,” said Mr Eady.

“I was always with him during the holidays, driving tractors and helping out.

“I have been content with it as it is a job I love and I have never known any different.”

Mr Eady, who is married to Stephanie, and has two daughters, Nicola and Joanne, said he had cut down his hours to three days a week, but could still be found on the farm every day during busy periods and he planned to continue working as long as he could.

“I would love to get to my father’s length of service, but it depends on health and strength and how long they will put up with me,” he said.

“Ideally, I want to keep going for a few more years.”