Organisers of the 2009 Great Yorkshire Show are celebrating another hugely successful event, announcing one of the highest attendance figures in the event’s history.
William MacLean and daughter Lynne with Mr MacLean’s Galloway bull which won the Supreme Beef Championship
A total of 130,731 visitors came through the gates for the annual showcase of farming and country life held at the Great Yorkshire Showground, Harrogate. The 2008 attendance figure was 126,376 and the record stands at 135,111 established in 2006.
Honorary Show Director Bill Cowling said: “We are absolutely delighted with the figures and for the wonderful support we’ve received from both our exhibitors and visitors. Our aim is to present an event which not only gives the farming industry a platform for its customers, but a super day out for all. The attendance figures and our record entries are a testament to that commitment.
Farming continues to be a roller coaster industry but it’s vital that we celebrate what is best about British agriculture and rural life and that is what the Great Yorkshire Show is all about. We have already begun the planning for next year’s show, which runs from Tuesday 13 to Thursday 15 July”
Yesterday (Thurs 16 July) the Main Ring was the setting for the traditional handover ceremony for the Society’s new President when Michael Bannister handed over the crook of office to his successor, Richard Elmhirst of Worsbrough, Barnsley, South Yorkshire. Sir Ken Morrison, Honorary President of Wm Morrison Supermarkets, becomes President-Elect for 2010-2011.
Among the many attractions at the show were thousands of cattle, sheep, pigs and horses, the 68-foot Hull and Humber Clipper yacht brought by Welcome to Yorkshire, miles of shopping at the hundreds of stands, and superb cookery demonstrations by top chefs including television’s Taste the Nation winner, Rosemary Shrager.
The Ripon Select Foods Cock o’ the North Showjumping Championship was a hotly contested battle, with Hickstead Derby winner William Funnell and Cortaflex Mondriaan snatching victory from Yorkshireman Paul Barker on Temple Ryefield, taking the £7,000 prize and the Perpetual Silver Challenge Trophy.
In the cattle classes, a 700-mile round trip paid off for Scottish Galloway breeder William MacLean, when he won the Supreme Beef Championship with his bull Blackcraig Kodiak. The Supreme Dairy title was taken by a Jersey cow, Hillside Laser’s Ann, shown by Adrian Harrison of Manor Farm, Thornton Rust, Leyburn.
A British Saddleback pig won the BPA Pig of the Year Award, with a September-born gilt from partners William Edwards and Amanda Thomas of Newbridge, Gwent, South Wales. The Supreme Sheep champion was shown by Gloucestershire prime sheep supremo Andrew Bishop with a Beltex ewe lamb.
Taking the Cuddy Supreme In Hand Championship was ten-year-old bay brood mare Rotherwood Flamenco, from the Stanley Grange Stud, Newton Aycliffe. Reserve Champion went to Merrigans Legacy, a three-year-old skewbald colt owned by Claire and Glen Merrigan Martin of Borrowby, Thirsk, North Yorkshire.
The Flower Show saw a stunning array of displays, with the coveted Doncaster Agricultural Society’s Perpetual Gold Cup going to the National Farmers’ Union yet again. This is the third year in a row the organisation has won the Best Exhibit in Show award. Scooping the Supreme Champion honours in the Cheese & Dairy Show was Belton Cheese Limited of Whitchurch, Shropshire, with a superb Double Gloucester.
The prestigious Tye Trophy, organised by the Yorkshire Agricultural Society and the Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group, was won by Beal Farm in Northumberland, a 1,000 acre arable farm run by Rodney Smith.
Another major attraction at the Show was the popular Skipton Building Society Fashion Pavilion, which on Tuesday (14 July) hosted the first Model Young Farmer competition. The seven contenders took to the catwalk in designer wear from Paul Smith and retro Vivienne Westwood. The winner was 25-year-old Jimmy Atkinson of Crook, Co Durham.
Preparations are well underway for the Society’s autumn event, Countryside Live which is generously sponsored by Change4Life, and takes place on Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 October, 2009.
The 152nd Great Yorkshire Show runs from Tuesday 13 – Thursday 15 July 2010.
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