The Todds Leap XUV 855D Gator on the popular Northern Ireland venue’s off-road track.
“The John Deere Gator is a great all-round vehicle which is built to a high standard and with excellent quality,” say Todds Leap.
Ireland’s largest activity centre, Todds Leap, has around 100 acres of different types of terrain to get around, including an off-road track, hill rally circuit and a digger driving area, to name just a few.
Based near Ballygawley in County Tyrone in Northern Ireland, Todds Leap is the brainchild of owner and ex-mechanic Benny O’Hanlon, who built it some 20 years ago. The centre hosts all types of visitors and group events, from corporate teambuilding days to stag parties, as well as a variety of vehicle training courses for LANTRA and other organisations.
Due to the size of the site, it needs a versatile utility vehicle to get to each activity and to transport clients and equipment – and that’s where John Deere dealer Johnston Gilpin came in. Having used several other all-terrain vehicles in the past, the centre’s management decided to try a John Deere XUV 855D diesel Gator, supplied by the Lisburn based dealership.
“We decided to buy the John Deere Gator as all the aspects of the machine suited our business as a whole,” says general manager Niall O’Hanlon. “The Gator gives us complete peace of mind, especially with clients. It’s a great all-round vehicle which is built to a high standard and with excellent quality.
“We bought the 855D with front and rear cab screens only, as we have a lot of trees to negotiate around the site and we thought doors would get easily damaged. It was the versatility and mobility of the John Deere Gator in particular that persuaded us to buy it. It really has a go anywhere mentality, plus having a diesel engine makes it more economical and easier to run for us.
“We mainly use the Gator for sit-in ATV training, boom pesticides courses and for our maintenance team to service and look after the site generally. It really is a super vehicle for moving around in compared to a conventional four-wheel drive vehicle, for example, as it is more manoeuvrable and will fit into some very tight areas. It is similar to a quad in that respect, but it can also carry a passenger and load safely and you don’t have to worry about wearing a helmet.
“We’ve been very pleased with the Gator’s performance so far and will consider adding more models to our fleet to cope with demand as the activity centre grows.”