At the launch of a Guinness World Record bid and fundraiser for the Alzeimer’s Society at the Clonmel Park Hotel are Cllr Imelda Goldsboro, Ballingarry; John O’Brien, organiser and Catherine Bartels.

By Aileen Hahesy

Six Co. Tipperary women are part of an all-female crew aiming to create a new silage harvesting world record next month.

They are members of the 38-strong “Grass Gals” team that has been assembled for the Guinness World Record bid at the Mount Melleray Community Silage Weekend in Co. Waterford on August

The Grass Gals crew will mow, rake and draw 30 acres of silage in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland at Mount Melleray Farm.

The Tipp women who have signed up for the challenge are Alison Hunt from Cashel, Pearl Casey, Ardfinnan; Ciara Shine, Ardfinnan; Catriona Tobin, Ardfinnan; Jennifer Russell, Tipperary and Roisin O’Rourke, Poulmucka.

Women from rural communities close to the Tipperary county border taking part in the event include Leonie Skehan from Rathgormack, Co. Waterford; Josephine Peters, Knocklong, Co. Limerick and Trisha Walsh and Patricia Hearn from Ballinamult, Co. Waterford.

The Grass Gals met at Clonmel Park Hotel last week for the launch event for the Guinness Book of Records challenge.

Tipperary’s Grass Gals will be all driving tractors drawing loads of silage to the pit for the record attempt.

Mother-of-four Pearl Casey regularly helped out at silage harvesting on her family’s farm in Ardfinnan when she was growing up and says she will be brushing up on her tractor driving skills over the next few weeks.

“We are all from farming backgrounds and have an interest in agriculture,” said Pearl.

She will be driving a John Deere tractor on loan from Templetuohy Farm Machinery where her husband works. “I have told him to get me the biggest, shiniest tractor,” joked Pearl, who works for a pharmaceutical company and is studying for a doctorate.

Mount Melleray Community Silage Weekend organiser John Long said they received a huge response to their call for volunteers for the “Grass Gals” challenge.. Thirty-eight volunteers is the maximum they can take and there are 22 women on a waiting list if anyone drops out.