Holttum Howard 700 Tractor

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This topic contains 18 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  irc 7 months ago.

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  • #32917

    rodneyt
    Participant

    Holttum Howard 700, factory / warehouse / nursery tractor.
    are there any survivors?
    if the Howard 700 is a bit rare, there wont be many of these ever made.
    Available as a whole unit, or a kit for a D.I.Y. conversion.

    search for Holttum on this and old forum achieves zero results,
    cant get any rarer than that! cheers Rod.

    Attachments:
    #32922

    charlie
    Keymaster

    That is an interesting use of a Howard 700, would make a good article for The Cultivator.

    #32930

    alan
    Participant

    I’ve just had a look for the Holttum-Howard 700 and I can only find one online magazine article mentioning it. The article is just a short mention in 1959 but does have prices.

    “A third wheel attachment for the Howard 700 now converts it into a three-wheel light tractor. The attachment has been developed by H. B. Holttum and Co Ltd. of Cambridge The third-wheel unit is available as an attachment to an existing Howard 700, or alternatively as the Holttum-Howard 700 three-wheel tractor complete. Estimated retail price of the complete unit is £260. Conversion unit is £60, plus driving wheels, wheel extensions and bumper bar. A special drawbar will retail at £8”

    The company ceased trading in early 1963 so that gives a short timeframe of only a few years, that is assuming that Holttum was manufacturing them.

    Interesting their address in Cambridge at the same time is the same as the Dorman Sprayer Co. Ltd.

    #32931

    charlie
    Keymaster

    Alan, thanks for the research.

    #32932

    roatavator
    Participant

    I’d guess by 1963 Howard had stopped production of the 700, probably explaining short run of the conversion.

    #32933

    trusty220
    Keymaster

    Holttum have come up quite a few times with my Trusty research and were a very active horticultural machinery dealer in the Cambridge area, so it doesn’t surprise me that they would come up with such a novel idea.

    It’s the first time that I’ve even heard of it and would make an interesting exhibit if anybody found one.

    #32941

    rodneyt
    Participant

    trusty220: can you please check the full name of the company you refer to as a very active machinery dealer, reason being I have a Howard brochure with a xx Holtum xx etc dealers stamp on it, sorry I don’t remember what the brochure item was, so can’t find it easily, but the name caught my eye at the time I got it, so I checked the names, it only has 1 T, quite different to the maker of the 3rd wheel conversion with 2 Ts. thanks Rod.

    #32943

    alan
    Participant

    I have a magazine mention for Holttum in 1954, this shows the name spelt with one ‘t’. In this advert I think it was perhaps just a simple spelling error. Photo attached.

    I have found a 1961 article detailing the life and retirement of Mr Holttum, which mentions Trusty tractors. He was also the designer of many of the items they manufactured.

    “A very well-known figure in the garden machinery business, Mr H. B. Holttum, has now retired. He was chairman of H. B. Holttum & Co. Ltd, 408, Cherryhinton Road, Cambridge, for many years and has had strong links with the Agricultural Machinery & Tractor Dealers Association.

    After working first in an engineering factory in Birmingham, being apprenticed later to a fruit grower in the Wisbech district, and then doing general farm work for about five years, Mr Holttum started on his own account in 1926, growing fruit and flowers at Willingham, Cambs.

    In 1941 he bought a horticultural sundries business in Willingham (was Berrycroft Stores Ltd in 1961) and started selling mechanical aids to market growers, being “Roteho Gem” and “Trusty” tractors. In 1945 he sold the sundries business and bought the Cherryhinton premises. A limited company was formed in 1949 when new works premises with 7000sq ft floor area and two new houses were built. Extensions were made to the company premises in 1957.

    Implements manufactured are largely of Mr Holttum’s own designs and are approved attachments for various makes of motor cultivators.

    Mr Holttum joined the A.M. & T.D.A. in 1947. He formed a horticultural section for it and remains the chairman of the horticultuaral section (in 1961).”

    Attachments:
    #32945

    rodneyt
    Participant

    maybe the memory is playing tricks, I have just been thru most of my brochures,
    and could only find a Gem / Bantam brochure from 1951,
    with dealer stamp in top right, Holttum 408 Cherryhinton Road.

    Thanks for the background on Mr Holttum, very interesting.
    cheers Rod.

    • This reply was modified 7 months, 2 weeks ago by  rodneyt.
    Attachments:
    #32950

    trusty220
    Keymaster

    It is a very distinctive name and that’s why it attracted my attention in the first place. It is definitely the Holttum that appears many times in the sales records of Tractors (London ) Ltd; I have never come across the name spelt with one “t” and so I suspect it may have been a typo if your memory is correct.

    #32951

    alan
    Participant

    I’ve had a good search to see if there’s any mention such as reviews from the time the conversion was available – I’ve found absolutely nothing! I thought that there might have been a photo of the machine being tested in one or another magazine but sadly not. Does anyone have anything?

    The question still remains; is there a Howard Holttum machine out there? Would be great to find one.

    For anyone doing future research on this manufacturer, I did find where the Cherryhinton factory was on a 1945 aerial photo map, image attached. Typically, it’s now a housing estate.

    Also the original Willingham premises where the Trustys and Rotehos were retailed from is shown on an aerial photo of the time on the Britain From Above website – cannot show it here ’cause of copyright etc.

    Attachments:
    #32958

    charlie
    Keymaster

    I am going to MERL in January, I will have a look through Farm Implement and Machinery Review journals to see if there is any mention in there.

    #32961

    rodneyt
    Participant

    MERL? yes please, can I have a list of the contents of the pictures/negatives?
    unless they are labelled, it would be pointless asking someone who doesn’t know RHL products for an opinion of what the machines might be.

    https://rdg.ent.sirsidynix.net.uk/client/en_GB/merl/search/results?qu=rotary+hoes+ltd&te=&lm=MERL2

    http://www.reading.ac.uk/adlib/Details/archive/110178815

    ages ago I purchased scans of 3 of their Howard brochures,
    1 has since turned up in paper form, all good.

    I thought I had another photo of a HH700 tractor towing a trolley, as part of some report, but cant find it. did find screenshots of Bootsowen youtube of brochures, which includes the same brochure as I have.

    Attachments:
    #32963

    rodneyt
    Participant

    “I’d guess by 1963 Howard had stopped production of the 700, probably explaining short run of the conversion.”
    yes roatavator,
    that would be right.

    I am slightly confused as what exactly is meant regarding date of last 700,
    one way to read this list would be to have the listed serial number as first in 1961,
    but other way is to prioritise statement of the 1961 number being last made,
    so it could have been anytime during that year, with no listing of first for that year.

    Either way, no more after 1961.

    when reading the service notes, it would seem they were full of problems, but mostly I hear they are great machines to use.

    it is my guess that they were only discontinued to make way for the 800 production line?

    Attachments:
    #32970

    rodneyt
    Participant

    while we are looking for unusual 700 attachments, keep an eye out for a pair of small car mudguards hanging on a nearby shed wall, see pic from a promotional road run…

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