A SURE sign that summer looms on the horizon is tickets for the Great Yorkshire Show going on sale. This is one of our region’s greatest showcases, as well as being the agricultural sector’s chance to meet, talk over and assess the health of the industry that is such a vital component of Yorkshire’s economy.
This year, more than 135,000 visitors are expected through the gates, and happily they will find a farming community which, for once, has cause for optimism. There are encouraging signs throughout the sector, which is no less than it deserves after a prolonged period of difficulty in which farmers have sometimes despaired, even though the spread of schmallenberg virus in the south of England has the potential to cast a shadow of uncertainty.
That farming can dare to be hopeful is not only good news for those whose livelihoods depend upon it; it is also good news for our countryside and our county. The Great Yorkshire is always a celebration of the best of agriculture; this year, let us hope it also heralds a new period of prosperity and progress for the rural economy.