Pembrokeshire based groundworks company owner Ashley Harden has put his dirt shaping skills and trusty Kobelco mini excavator to use by converting the back garden of his family home into an off-road dirt track to keep his young family entertained through the COVID-19 lockdown.
Ashley and his wife Gemma are proud parents of three “energetic” young boys – William, Oliver and Freddie. Like all parents during the Coronavirus lockdown, battling with the trials and tribulations of home schooling and having enough activities to keep the kids entertained is a constant challenge.
Gemma said “We have been following all the government guidelines and staying home. It has been great to get all this extra time with our boys but keeping them entertained without venturing out for more than our one family walk a day is challenging. We have been baking, facetime calls and arts and craft activities alongside their home schooling – but these boys need more than that to wear them out! Ash has always been one to crack on when a job needs doing, but when he told me about his plans, I didn’t expect the next morning for two loads of topsoil to have appeared in our back garden!”
Using some of the equipment from his groundworks and plant hire business, including the Kobelco SK17SR-3 cabbed excavator supplied by Molson Compact Equipment, Ashley used his digger driving skills to shape the freshly delivered soil into a series of twists, turns, jumps and bumps that will keep the boys entertained well past the lockdown period.
Ashley said; “On my rare weekends off, the boys and I love to go quad bike racing all over the country, so this just seemed like the natural thing to do. So far, they have been racing around and trying to beat each other’s times on their mini quads, mountain bikes and anything else they can get to go around the track. Even the dog has been having a run around it.
“The Kobelco from Molson was the perfect tool for the job – small enough to get in our back garden without having to remove any fencing but plenty of power to quickly move and shape the 30 odd tonnes of soil before the boy’s excitement grew beyond control”.
Gemma went on to say “Although he says he has done this for the kids, we all know he did it for the biggest kid in the house really”. Ashley celebrated his 30th birthday just after he completed the track, allowing him to enjoy “a day at the races” with all the family, without leaving home.