Over 6,000 people of all ages flocked to Ashton, Ballycanew to celebrate the return of Gorey Agricultural Show last weekend.
After a two year pause due to the pandemic, participants and visitors alike were eager to get the show on the road, with trade stand holders setting up from 7 a.m. on the day. Horses, cattle and sheep were next in the queue for their classes, along with the adults and children with their contributions to the craft competitions.
“We had a super day from beginning to end,” said PRO of Gorey Agricultural Show, Stella Davis. “We were delighted because we were holding it at a different venue and all went according to plan. There was a great turnout.”
This year’s show was based in Ashton. While it was a new location for some younger committee members, the show was based in Ashton from 1995 to 2009 before moving to Clonattin until 2019.
The show was officially opened by Minister Martin Heydon, who was offered a tour of the show grounds by Chairman Willie Cecil and Secretary Laura Johnston.
“Minister Heydon holds the remit for Farm Safety at the Department of Agriculture and was particularly interested in the Well Being Marquee anchored by Awareness Head to Toe. The organisation conducted several farm safety demonstrations throughout the day, while Gorey’s Men Shed had a great display of garden planters in the marquee,” said Stella.
In the cattle field, Slaney Foods were the main sponsor of the Hereford cattle section, with Carnew Mart sponsoring the Parthenaise. People of all ages enjoyed seeing the animals out in their splendour. Andrea McCann was in charge of the sheep section, and due to her hard efforts, had almost 200 sheep to be judged. New this year were the Lanark Breed, along with Zwarbles, Texel, Suffolk and Jacob.
It was all go in the Horse and Pony Field, with fancy dress competitions, two RDS Side Saddle qualifiers, the Bannow & Rathangan Show three-year-old qualifier and many more getting involved. There was eight rings running all day, and competitors were delighted to be out on the Agricultural Show circuit again. The Pony Club had a long and busy day competing in pony games competitions.
“The Dog Show was an overwhelming success with a lot of the classes being extremely well-supported. One class in particular had 47 entries. We had anticipated there would be huge interest in the Dog Show, as many families acquired new canine friends during Covid,” explained Stella.
There was an outstanding display in the Indoor Craft Tent, with lots of colourful artwork, craft and baking.
“A huge amount of effort goes into this area to ensure that all the little people are included. We had fantastic efforts including miniature gardens and colouring competitions. The overall prize in the adult section was won by Raymond Higgins who travelled from Cork for the day.”
Visitors were entertained all day as Stacey Breen, Adrian Ryan, Seamus Long and Dancing with Declan brought their dance floor and danced the afternoon away. The show organisers were also ready for the Wexford versus Clare match, with a big screen on site for people to sit and watch the match.
The Chairman Willie Cecil and the Committee of Gorey Agricultural Show would like to thank landowner Mrs Anne Hardy and Family, their sponsors, and their volunteers, without whom it would be impossible to run a show. They would also like to thank the general public who come in the gate and all the trade stands who sign up regardless of weather. Results are available online on www.goreyagriculturalshow.com.