Pictured above is Harry Willsmer, Alec Willsmer’s father and Carlo Cripps’ uncle. The following pages contain interviews with some of our local residents who have worked in the farming industry over the years. In the early days before the tractor, farming was hard work and very reliant on horses. Regrettably there are very few farm horsemen around to tell their stories but I have been extremely fortunate to be able to speak to several local people, old enough to have been around since the end of WWII. Pendril Bentall manages and owns, in partnership with his brother Arthur, Little Wakering Wick Farm. He describes in his own words his lifetime of living and working on the farm. He farms over 900 acres of land and his biggest crop is potatoes which he sells to 90% of the Fish and Chip shops locally. One of the interviews is with the wife of the late Alec Willsmer, who was Pendril Bentall’s Farm Manager on Little Wakering Wick Farm until he died. Pendril says that he owes a lot to Alec, since he taught him everything he knows about farming. He had great admiration for the man. Interestingly Carlo Cripps had a passion for driving a tractor before he started school and today at 72 years old he is still earning his living, driving his tractor. Through the years Carlo has competed in many of the local agricultural shows and competitions and has won many awards and trophies for his mastering of the tractor. Brian Shelley had no other option initially but to work on a farm on Foulness.  He worked straight from school as a farm hand for 5 years but he knew that this was not the life for him and hoped that someday he would be able to break away. After completing his National Service, he settled down to a long career in the gas industry and has no regrets about leaving the farming industry.
The Hillman Minx belonged to Harry Belchamps.
Barling & Wakering Villages

Farming through the Years

The Hillman Minx belonged to Harry Belchamps.
Pictured above is Harry Willsmer, Alec Willsmer’s father and Carlo Cripps’ uncle. The following pages contain interviews with some of our local residents who have worked in the farming industry over the years. In the early days before the tractor, farming was hard work and very reliant on horses. Regrettably there are very few farm horsemen around to tell their stories but I have been extremely fortunate to be able to speak to several local people, old enough to have been around since the end of WWII. Pendril Bentall manages and owns, in partnership with his brother Arthur, Little Wakering Wick Farm. He describes in his own words his lifetime of living and working on the farm. He farms over 900 acres of land and his biggest crop is potatoes which he sells to 90% of the Fish and Chip shops locally. One of the interviews is with the wife of the late Alec Willsmer, who was Pendril Bentall’s Farm Manager on Little Wakering Wick Farm until he died. Pendril says that he owes a lot to Alec, since he taught him everything he knows about farming. He had great admiration for the man. Interestingly Carlo Cripps had a passion for driving a tractor before he started school and today at 72 years old he is still earning his living, driving his tractor. Through the years Carlo has competed in many of the local agricultural shows and competitions and has won many awards and trophies for his mastering of the tractor. Brian Shelley had no other option initially but to work on a farm on Foulness.  He worked straight from school as a farm hand for 5 years but he knew that this was not the life for him and hoped that someday he would be able to break away. After completing his National Service, he settled down to a long career in the gas industry and has no regrets about leaving the farming industry.

Farming through the Years

Barling & Wakering Villages