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Strong Entries Announced for Countryside Live

Competitive entries for next weekend’s Countryside Live are the second highest in the event’s 12 year history, totalling 2,924 and tickets are flying out of the door, with family tickets in particular, up by 15% on last year.

The little sister of the Great Yorkshire Show takes place at Harrogate on Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 October with classes for cattle, sheep and horses, as well as poultry, pigeons and honey.

 8 year old April Skelton, Champion of the Young Sheep Handler section at Countryside Live 2013

8 year old April Skelton, Champion of the Young Sheep Handler section at Countryside Live 2013

Bill Cowling, Show Director said: “The number of entries is a huge endorsement of Countryside Live by the farming and rural industry, with entries coming from as far north as Scotland and down to the south coast. And there will be quality as well as quantity as many of our winners go on to take top awards at other leading events, and I’m sure this year will be no exception. It’s a wonderful opportunity to gain an insight into agriculture, as well as have a great day out.”

Some 172 cattle will come before the judges at the Great Yorkshire Showground, 311 sheep (a record number), and 331 entries across the equine section. The honey section has special cause for celebration with an all-time best of 259.

Section 2012 2013 2014
Beef 189 176 172
Beef Young Handlers 17 15 11
Sheep 280 210 311
Sheep Young Handlers 18 18 19
Equine 303 344 283
Honey 215 215 259
Pigeons 848 769 726
Poultry 1270 1027 1095
Talented Show Jumper 44 54 48
Total 3184 2828 2924

The packed programme includes firm favourites as well as some new additions. For the first time there will be mountain bike displays, pony rides are a new feature, and the popular Northern Show Cross equine competition takes place over both days rather than just one, and in the Main Ring.

Graham and Tina Fletcher will again be putting the “Search for a Talented Showjumper” competitors through their paces, whilst dog agility displays, falconry and the entertaining One Man and His Pig competition are also on the timetable.

Countryside Live was born in 2003 from the trauma of Foot and Mouth epidemic when many summer events, including the Great Yorkshire Show, had to be cancelled. Its aim, to increase knowledge and understanding of farming and rural life remains at the heart of the event.

An important element of the weekend will be the live debates, organised by the Future Farmers of Yorkshire, which will focus on the joys and challenges of working in the industry.

Speakers are:

  • Kate Morgan, pig farmer from Pockthorpe, East Yorkshire

  • Malcolm Fewster, dairy farmer from Cleckheaton, West Yorkshire

  • James Hopwood, potato buyer and farmer from near York

  • Duncan Berkshire, vet from Ripon

  • Ian Pennock, agronomist with McCain Foods

  • Joe Turton, Environmental Fate scientist, Food and Environment Research Agency

The debate takes place at 12.30pm, Saturday 18 October in the Beef Ring in Hall 1. All are welcome.

Countryside Live

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