Jan 30 2013 ByJackie Grant
A popular Moffat farmer died after plunging 15 feet from the top of a silage pit on Saturday afternoon.
Sixty-two-year-old Willie Davidsons death has shocked the farming community, with one friend saying his loss will leave a massive hole in the industry.
Emergency services were called to Poldean Farm around 2.30pm, where grandfather Mr Davidson ran the 2,000 acre beef and sheep farm with his wife Jennifer and son Alisdair.
Police said there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death and a report has been sent to the procurator fiscal.
Lockerbie farmer Robin Spence, a friend of the family, told the Standard he was shocked and saddened by the news.
He said: Willie was a larger than life character and involved in so many things including young farmers, NFU, the Highland Show and Dumfries Show. He was also a member of a steering group set up to help other farmers affected by foot and mouth.
Willies cattle and sheep were culled in the 2001 foot and mouth epidemic but it didnt take him long to build his stock back up. He was a good stockman and a great family man.
The last conversation I had with him was just before Christmas and he was telling me all about his grandchildren. The Davidsons are a strong family, and my thoughts are with them at this tragic time.
The family moved to Poldean in 1969. Neighbour Robert Braid told the Standard: This was a terrible accident and could have happened to anybody.
Ive known Willie and lived near him for 33 years and Im utterly shocked. Hes going to be a big loss to the farming community and everyones thoughts are with the family.
Mr Davidson was also a past Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland director. A show spokesman said: It was with the greatest sadness that we learnt of the passing of a past RHASS director and Salers and Lleyn exhibitor, Willie Davidson, following a tragic accident. Our thoughts and sincerest condolences are extended to his family.
The dad-of-three was due to judge the Lleyn sheep entries at this years show.
Russell Kingan, chairman of Dumfries Show, described Willie as a very good ambassador for the show.
He added: Over the years Willie has worked hard to encourage new members to Dumfries Show where he has been very much involved with stock, both sheep and cattle.
Willie was a weel-kent face and had time for everyone. It is a very sad loss which will leave a massive hole in the farming community.