After winning the previous title, pride shines through as Scotland’s biggest two day event gets ready for the next show
The largest two-day show in Scotland, Turriff Show won this year’s Show Business competition on the strength of a massive public vote.
It is a show which is a crucial part of the local Aberdeenshire community, clearly illustrated by the £100,000 it raised last year from local organisations and businesses to develop a new area of the showground.
Winning the competition is a huge acknowledgement of the extraordinary community support the show enjoys, says senior vice-president Bruce Ferguson. And besides being a major social event in Aberdeenshire, it is now regarded as the main shop window for promoting agriculture and the foodindustry in the North East of Scotland.
President Stuart Stephen says the show is focused on developing further. “We can’t stand still, and we know we need to appeal to everyone, but it’s the weather which will make it.”
Next year, the show will celebrate its 150th anniversary and will also be one of two in Scotland to host the Homecoming Scotland 2014 celebration, with a focus on people returning to their Aberdeenshire roots. A special homecoming hospitality marquee and display of farming through the ages will take centre stage at the show.
As always at Turriff Show, Sunday is devoted to horses and ponies, goats, rabbits, cavies, pigeons and an open dog show (with 145 classes held under Kennel Club rules), with about 650 equestrian entries and 500 dogs competing.
Monday is the main day for cattle, sheep, Clydesdale horses, sheep and poultry, with about 325 cattle entries, 490 sheep entries (including the return of the Bluefaced Leicester progeny show), 30 Clydesdale horses and 440 poultry entries. The cattle inter-breed is being judged by Stirling auctioneer David Leggat, with the sheep overall champion being picked by John Wight from Crawford, Biggar.
Livestock judging and parades aside, the show also features a huge industrial marquee with more than 1,700 entries and a large horticultural show. It also has a busy main ring entertainment programme, including carriage driving on the Sunday and show-jumping on Monday.
One of the main attractions this year is the Jason Smyth Adrenaline Tour, explains show secretary Helen Paterson.
A former world champion motocross rider, Mr Smyth will perform quad and motorcycle stunts, including having his quad flying 30ft in the air while performing aerial tricks. Cyril the Squirrel and his team of stunt terriers will also be appearing at Turriff for the first time, while tug of war enthusiasts can look forward to the Young Farmers Clubs competition on Sunday afternoon.
Audience participation is encouraged for some of the main ring events. New this year is the Open Big Bale Push for teams of two, while children’s and adult’s races will run on both days, with good prize money and a free packet of sweets for every child taking part. Children can also take their pets to be part of the free pet parade each day.
Sulky racing will return to the show this year, and it will also host one of the largest vintage and classic vehicle displays in Scotland. This year, more than 120 models will make their way round the ring on the Sunday evening, while Turriff and District Pipe Band, Deveron
River Brass and Turriff Junior Silver Band will perform, as will many Highland dancers in a hotly contested competition.
A full afternoon entertainment programme will run on both days at the show
Trade stands: More than 200 outdoor trade stands, including all types of agricultural, forestry and countryside-related exhibitors, as well as renewable energy stands. Other stands include fashion and clothing, horticulture and garden equipment, arts, crafts and toys
Food fayre: Visit to sample oak smoked Scottish fish and game, haggis, award winning cheese, jams and chutneys, shortbread, speciality cakes and bakery products, fudge and tablet, luxury ice cream and a selection of local drinks
Exhibition hall: With a lifestyle theme, the hall will feature a variety of stands and cookery demonstrations on both days
Indoor shopping mall: This marquee has a selection of stands offering a wide range of quality goods. From boutiques to traditional children’s clothes handmade in Scotland, jewellery and gifts, it also includes art and photography stands
Art and craft marquee: Devoted to handmade crafts, visitors can expect to find everything from horncraft, wood turnery, embroidery, jewellery, hand crafted greetings cards and straw work