Hailing from near Tallanstown in Co. Louth, Eoin Lynch comes from a tillage background, with his father John having grown barley for straw on their farm at one stage. He is also the founding member of his own contracting firm, L&L Agri Hire, in his native Co. Louth.
“I have a small tillage background.” Eoin told Kevin of That’sFarming.
“That is kind of where I got into the machinery end of things.” He added.
This is not the only agricultural influence within the Lynch household, as John Lynch also previously ran his own Plant-Hire enterprise, John Lynch Ltd. This, no doubt, is where Eoin gained this passion for the industry and machinery and from the early days spent in the cab alongside his father, it soon became clear that he would be yet another one of the Lynch household to secure a full-time career behind the wheel.
“I remember trying to get the odd day off school just so I could go to work with him and spend the day in the digger.” Eoin laughed.
Eventually, the call of the machine became too strong and Eoin soon began working for his father’s plant hire company. Around the same time, John had abandoned his tillage venture, before Eoin re-integrated the family back into the sector by commencing his own small-scale tillage enterprise.
“My father used to run a plant hire company and I used to work for him,” said Eoin.
“He always farmed but got into the Plant hire then…Then I started doing the tillage over the summer months myself and that’s really how I got into the Agri end of things.”
Eoin began his tillage operation by growing parcels of winter barley and winter wheat crops, which were then sold as straw.
“It was usually winter wheat and a bit of winter wheat.” The contractor explained.
The tillage operation was cut back in recent years due to the emergence and progression of the contracting enterprise, which has grown bigger and better each year.
“We have the land rented out at the minute.” Eoin said.
History of L&L/Eoin’s journey -
Always focused on securing a future involving machinery, Eoin set off to achieve this after departing school at an early age.
It was at 16 years old that his father John gifted him something which would change his life for the better, a Landini 14500. This was to be the tractor that started L&L Agri Hire and contracting operations began with a solitary baler.
“I left school when I was sixteen and my father had an old tractor here, so I ended up buying a round baler myself.” Eoin said.
“I started doing a bit of baling myself then, back in around 2000.” He continued.
Eoin’s early days of business saw him focus on hay and straw baling, but contracting operations quickly grew from here and in the space of two years, Eoin added a baler and mower to his newly formed fleet.
“We grew the business from there.” Eoin said.
“Originally we were baling straw and hay and then a few years later I bought a mower and a new baler and went into the baling and wrapping.”
The official start for L&L Agri Hire was 2008, meaning that Eoin and the team are now officially in their eleventh year of trading. In honour of the feat, Eoin added the first tillage harvester to the ranks.
“I actually set up the company in 2008 and bought my first tillage harvester, a Claas 870.” He said.
The main core of the team year-round is made up of Eoin himself and his father John. They then hire in a number of part-time drivers during summer months, with a driver also hired in with his own tractor.
“Myself and my father do most of the work over the winter months.” The contractor noted.
“In the summer then we have about 4 part-time staff and we hire another man in with his own tractor.”
The main service provided by the team of L&L Agri is silage work, both pit and baled from start to finish. This sees the team mowing, raking, baling, wrapping and harvesting. Eoin and the gang also offer hedge-cutting services, carried out via a saw-head attachment on the company’s digger.
“We do both pit and baled silage.” Eoin states.
This digger is used to allow the team to offer all types of excavation work. This includes general site work, land drainage and reclamation, laneways, foundation work and preparation for housing units.
“I bought a new Doosan back in late 2016 and I have a sawhead for it. We get a good amount of ditches and work to do…It’s very easy on wet ground…You have that extra bit of reach too for reaching higher trees,” Eoin said to That’sFarming.
“We do site work too, basically any work I can get for it. It keeps me going over the winter months.” He stated.
The team operate within a 20-25mile radius of their base in Tallanstown.
A man loyal to the green machine, Eoin and the team of L&L Agri Hire operate with a fleet of five John Deere tractors.
Tractors: John Deere 6930, John Deere 7710, John Deere 6620, John Deere 7530, John Deere 6215R.
Grass: Claas Jaguar 890, John Deere butterfly mowers (Front and back), McHale F5500’s (x2), Tanco wrapper, Claas 2900 rake.
Other: Doosan 140-5 excavator (with sawhead attachment). New Holland W130 B loading shovel. Kane silage wagons (x2), Ruscon Silage wagons (x2).
For those of you wondering the reason behind Eoin’s loyalty to John Deere, he admits that this is simply due to a top-end service provided by local dealer, Michael Hanlon of Hanlon machinery Ltd in Dundalk, who looks after him “like a child”.
“We keep five John Deere’s at the moment.” Eoin explained to Kevin.
“I bought my first new baler off him (Michael Hanlon) back in 2003 and he has looked after me like a child all of my trading life. He is always on the end of the phone and the back-up service is 100%...I’d have no reason to change.” He stated.
Future of L&L Agri Hire -
Content with how the first ten years of business has gone thus far, Eoin doesn’t envisage any major changes over the coming years.
They will, as always, look to keep their loyal customer base happy, providing the top-end service for which they are now known.
“Try to keep the bills paid and a few pound coming in, that’s what it’s all about,” Eoin said when asked of his plans for the future.
He may though, add another digger with a sawhead attachment to the fleet as Eoin admits that there are not too many other contractors in the area who are operating with one for hedge-cutting purposes. The team are also on the verge of purchasing a smaller digger, to enable them to carry out other types of site work in the coming years.
“We are actually in the process of buying a smaller digger for the site work.” Eoin said.
“The digger we have is just a small bit awkward for around houses and stuff.”
One new service which will be added to the list offered by Eoin and the team in the coming months is slurry spreading. Eoin says they will purchase a dribble bar system in the coming months, while a dung spreader is another piece of machinery which is expected to arrive in 2019.
“We are looking now to go into the slurry end of things.” Said Eoin.
“We will probably end up going with a pipe system with a dribble bar. That will be coming probably over the coming six months. We will probably get a dung spreader too,” he added.
Why Contracting -
A man with a passion for machinery so intense, it is flowing through his blood. In fact, it is embedded in his DNA, something gained from his father John.
“I always had an interest in machinery,” the Louth man explains.
“I was used to driving tractors and stuff at home and a bit of the plant hire work…I just had a general interest and it was probably the next step at the time to try and expand the business.”
Eoin not only enjoys what he does, but he exudes a massive passion for all things contracting related. There is simply nothing else he would rather do. A contractor through and through.
Would you like to follow the journey of Eoin and the team over the coming year? You can do so via their Facebook page here.
Are you a contractor or working for one? Fancy sharing your story and being featured in our ‘Contractor of the Week’ series just like Eoin? If this sounds like you, contact Kevin via email with a short bio at firstname.lastname@example.org.