Heavy rain fails to stop 50,000 visiting Tullamore Show
MORE than 50,000 people have made their way to the Tullamore Show for the biggest one-day event of the farming year.
Mucky conditions underfoot didn't stop visitors pouring in from all over Ireland from early morning.
Torrential downpours drove many into the marquee events ranging from fashion shows to bakery and floral competitions.
But as always it was animals which took centre stage at what's been described as the "olympics of Irish farming".
From the pedigree cattle vying for the AIB National Livestock Awards to the miniature ponies delighting smaller visitors there was something for everyone.
Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney was among those making the rounds between showers of the massive Bluebell estate spread out over 250 acres.
Opening the show, he made a special appeal to visitors to redouble their efforts to improve farm safety after a grim year on that front.
Many families there had experienced the trauma and distress of losing a loved one to an accident he said.
More people have died already in 2014 than in the whole of 2013 making it crucial everyone works to prevent more tragedies, the Minister said.
Visitors could also bid on cattle at the show with the country's first ever online livestock auction taking place today.
Meanwhile the prize cattle battling for the big pedigree champion awards were primped and preened from early morning to get them looking their best.