lives on Gosling Farm with his collie dog Patch, and his ever-reliable
Little Red Tractor. LRT carries Stan and Patch
all around the farm and its
environs, meeting folks, making new friends and
helping to keep the farmland
and livestock in good order...
This simple series was adapted from the stories
by Colin Reeder. The tales
focus on an everyday working farm, and
its place in the countryside. The Tractor
isn't exceptional in any particular way. LRT is
just a regular farm vehicle.
People and animals go missing, or get lost, fallen
trees are removed, new farm
equipement is obtained, old equipment is maintained
- and LRT is usually at
the heart of the work, pulling, hauling and
The animation here is of the most rudimentary
kind. Colin Reeder's watercolour
artwork is panned and scanned, animatic style,
beneath a rostrum camera and
given some simple manipulation in an editing
suite. It's an old-fashioned method,
just half-a-step away from a "Jackanory"
story, or indeed, those Ark
But if you're in the right mood for a rustic
country tale, it has appeal...
Little Red History
Those "Little Red Tractor Stories"
were first published in 1990. The books
featured Colin Reeder's artwork with text
from Elizabeth Laird. For the series,
Peter Tye came on board and several - um -
Tye-in books were published
featuring his new stories with Colin's artwork.
in 2004, Stan and his tractor hit paydirt when Entertainment Rights
got behind a
brand-spanking new tv series, filmed in stop-motion. The new
"Little Red Tractor" series features
fabulous animation from the Little
Entertainment Company, and in a move akin to
the 90s revamp of
"Emmerdale Farm", Gosling farm, Babblebrook
and its environs are
invested with bigger, brighter machines, bigger
storylines and bustle.
It's a funky, fun series. And although farm life has
mechanised and modernised, that olde countryside
lifestyle and the
pluckiness of our favourite Tractor are still
at the heart of each episode...
Meanwhile, Colin Tye has gone on to bring
us the adventures of "Ollie the
Collie", both in book form and as an
animated show of its own.
Original Little Red Tractor books
The very first 32-page stories were
published by Collins in 1990.
They were illustrated by Colin Reeder,
with text by Elizabeth Laird.
Here are the titles:
The Day the Ducks Went Skating
The Day Veronica was Nosy
The Day Patch Stood Guard
The Day Sidney Ran Off
The Day Sidney Was Lost
Since their publication, we've
had Peter Tye's tales published by
Scholastic, as well as a shiny new
selection of story and activity books
to tie-in with the stop-motion series.
But if you're getting back to the
origins of the character, those titles
above were first!
original LRT books at Amazon.co.uk
Little Red video
When the series launched on video, extra live-action
episodes were tagged on
to each tape. These weren't stories, rather,
they were visual guides to life
on a real working farm, and they featured
a real-life Little Red Tractor,
and farm pals. There was also a "Little
Red Tractor" club for kids to join...
Red Tractor episodes
The animatic series began with Brian
But Richard Briers took over from episode
narrator: Brian Glover
The Day Jeremy Came to Stay
Little Red Tractor to the Rescue
The Day Auntie Ellie Went for a Swim
The Day Stan's World Turned Upside Down
The Day of the Shipwreck
Winter Arrives on Gosling Farm
The Day of Molehills and Windmills
The Day of the Big Surprise
narrator: Richard Briers
The Day Puppy Found His Name
The Day Dudley Was Late
The Day Henry Went to Wigglesworth
The Ghost of Whistling Bridge
Red Tractor Stories on DVD
Red Tractor Stories Christmas Special
2 / Revelation Films / November 2008
producer & director: Peter
writer & illustrator: Colin
exec producer: David
extra artwork: Auberon
original music: Michael
rostrum camera: Zephyr
on-line edit: Lane
sound dubbing: Video
Glover (eps 1 - 8)
Briers (eps 9 - 12)