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Homepage. This page: Photographs that once belonged to a salesman for the Crawley 75 mini-tractors.

Crawley 75.

I found eight photographs all of which feature the compact Crawley 75 Diesel tractor, a small machine designed for owners of smallholdings, market gardens, and similarly-sized fields, in which a full-size tractor would struggle to function. Judging by the notes pencilled on the reverse of several images, I think these must have belonged at one time to either a sales manager for Crawley, or someone else involved with its manufacture and/or marketing. Reading around, opinions seem to vary in terms of how many Crawley 75s were actually produced - some say 100, others 200. Probably 100 or so were built in England, prior to production switching to Dutch soil (of which more anon). Either way, they were far from numerous in their day, and survivors are quite scarce today.
In the first photograph, a 75 Diesel is shown parked in a field - its natural habitat. The scene isn't dated, but probably dates to the mid-1950s. The colour scheme was a light green colour, with yellow wheels. A strip of a contrasting colour or finish - possibly polished aluminium - runs down the centre of the front panel.
(Please click the thumbnail to view the full-size tractor images.)
Press photo for the Crawley Diesel tractor
The Crawley was originally built in Sussex, but the design was by a Dutchman. Said gentleman re-located to Holland, and re-commenced production from there. Coincidentally, the following three photographs were taken in Holland, presumably at a trade fair or agricultural event. The Crawley is shown taking part in a parade, towing a trailer on which nurses and various plants and bushes are positioned. There is a large sign for EATRIXOORD also - did they mean to spell out "Beatrixoord" I wonder, which is a hospital in The Netherlands? I can also make out two crossed flags attached to the front of the tractor, one the British flag, the other for the Netherlands.
On parade in the Netherlands
The second of the parade photographs is dated June 1958. Clearly the tractor was brand new at the time of these photographs.
Front view
The following photograph also appears to have been taken in the Netherlands, as a note on the reverse reads "I am in the middle of this bunch, trying to explain - in Dutch - how the tractor works!". This would suggest that the tractor was still being produced in England at the time, by Crawley Metal Products Limited. There's quite a scrum going on to find out more about the Crawley.
The tractor being demonstrated
Now, to another show, and once again the Crawley is being presented at an agricultural gathering. A sign describing the tractor's Petter PC1 "high speed lightweight" diesel engine can be seen to the left of shot, alongside a tractor that has had its bonnet removed. To the right is a complete example, this one featuring a cut-out to its front panel, unlike the others I have photographs of here. A large sign in the background advertises the new tractor's (English) price - 280 - while further to the right we have a glimpse of a display for Crawley 75 implements. I think this and the next photo were taken at a show in Plymouth, England.
Sales stand at an agricultural event
This next photograph looks to have been taken at the same gathering in Plymouth, this time looking out from the sales stand. An older gent is shown sat on the tractor, while the chap on the right (to whom I think these photos originally belonged) gives out the sales patter ("I'm the good looking one!!!" a note on the reverse clarifies). Apparently the tractor in shot has a "Greyhound plough pinched from the Trusty Tractor".
Rear view of both tractors

New tractors at the factory.

Both of the following snapshots look to have been taken at the Crawley factory. The first shows a brand new machine, wrapped up in protective cardboard prior to despatch. Another tractor, plus various unidentified lumps of machinery, can be made out in the background.
New tractor at the factory
The final photograph in this collection, again printed on Agfa-Brovira paper, is a rear view of a newly-built tractor, fitted with a plough. Curiously the note on the reverse identifies the scene as being of "chassis waiting to be assembled" - presumably referring to the heavy items stacked on the floor beyond the complete tractor.
Chassis at the factory
Although this is primarily a site about classic road vehicles, older tractors (which I'm quite keen on anyway) do appear here and there. There are 240 pages given over to the free advertising of classic tractor parts here for instance, while on this page there is a poster for ESSO TVO fuel. A leaflet describing magnetos produced for tractors by Wico can be found here.
Return to Page 17 in the vintage gallery.

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