Slight dip in visitors but show still a massive draw

Honorary show director Bill Cowling (right), who was appointed Deputy Lieutenant for North Yorkshire by Lord Crathorne during the Great Yorkshire Show.
Honorary show director Bill Cowling (right), who was appointed Deputy Lieutenant for North Yorkshire by Lord Crathorne during the Great Yorkshire Show.
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A slight dip in visitors has failed to take the gloss off what was an “exceptional” Great Yorkshire Show earlier this week, organisers have announced.

Some 130,949 people passed through the showground gates in Harrogate over its three days, compared with 134,837 attendees last year - a little less than three per cent down.

Nonetheless, the Royal guests proved a big draw, with Princess Anne and Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, touring the event on separate days, and there were record entries in the sheep and cattle classes.

Honorary show director Bill Cowling said: “We’ve had an exceptional three days with super crowds, record entries and of course, in what is a first for us, two royal visitors in as many days. Our gate figure is slightly down on last year’s which is a bit disappointing, but to have had two amazing events showcasing Yorkshire within one week is just wonderful. And of course we’re already looking ahead to our autumn show, Countryside Live in October.”

Mr Cowling has speculated that the first day of the show may have seen fewer visitors as a result of people turning out for the Grand Depart celebrations across Yorkshire last weekend. The party atmosphere may have seen some people leave visiting the show until later in the week, he said.

Remarking on some of the standout moments of the 156th show, Mr Cowling highlighted the performance put on by Lorenzo, the Flying Frenchman and his amazing equine display.

Livestock classes were hard fought, with the Supreme Beef Championship going to an eight-year-old Limousin cow presented by Doug Mash of Chesham, Buckinghamshire. The Supreme Dairy silverware was awarded to a Holstein, Meiklefirth Plaid Lutske, owned by David Yates of Kircudbrightshire.

A homebred Texel tup, took the Supreme Sheep Championship. The tup was shown by Mark Priestley, on behalf of Boden & Davies of Mellor Hall Farm, Stockport, while the British Pig Association’s Pig of the Year was won by the Loveless family of Dorset with a Duroc pig, Portbury Turnatofe.