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Gardening and growing enthusiasts called upon as Cartmel Show gears up for 136th year

Cartmel Show day 2018 (Credit Clare Geldard)

With 135 years of heritage under its belt, Cartmel Show has certainly stood the test of time. Held annually on the first Wednesday in August at Cartmel Racecourse, the Show is all about celebrating the best of our county, food, farming and countryside.

It’s unique setting and appealing blend of displays and attractions never fails to draw the crowds, last year attracting over 9,000 visitors. Cartmel Show is also a highly popular fixture in the calendar of the hundreds of competitors who enter classes at the event each year, all eager to take home the trophy or join the prestigious grand parade of champions.

From rusty coloured rabbits and rare breed poultry to champion beef cattle and magnificent shire horses, the diversity of animals and livestock on display during the day is a draw in itself.

Visitors to the vast horticultural marquee will be treated to rows of brightly coloured floral displays, intricately designed floral art creations and tasty-looking home-grown vegetables.

This year, for the first time, in a bid to encourage more people to have a go at flower and vegetable showing, Cartmel Agricultural Society are hosting ‘An Evening of Learning’ on Monday 8th July at 7pm in Cartmel Village Hall. The evening is free to attend, is open to anyone and will include presentations, demonstrations and a Q&A session. Local horticultural showing experts, Sarah Fishwick and Jim Robinson will be delivering presentations on how to show flowers and vegetables correctly.

Jim, who sits on the committee of the Northern Branch of the National Vegetable Society explained, “I got into vegetable showing quite by accident. It was at a visit to Southport in the eighties when I came across the displays of sweet peas that I first became interested in growing flowers. I decided to grow a few vegetables alongside and when I began to take them to shows, my vegetables were more successful. Over the years, growing shallots, onions and leeks has become my specialism”.

He added, “The evening of learning at Cartmel offers a great opportunity for anyone that has an interest in growing or showing flowers and veg to come along and ask questions. We will be showing slideshows on how to prepare and show vegetables and flowers, as well giving explanations of what the judges will be looking for on show day.

“It really is a fantastically rewarding hobby and it is accessible to everybody. Children can get involved too and Cartmel Show has a number of special classes for children to enter.”

With less than six weeks to go, final preparations for the Show are well underway as Show Secretary Sarah Dickinson explained, “So much happens behind the scenes to make the show a success, particularly at this time of year and it simply wouldn’t be possible without our team of dedicated volunteers, supporting businesses and exhibitors. Not to mention our competitors – the variety of skill, talent and ability that you can see as you walk across the showfield is quite amazing.”

“I think the enduring popularity of the Show and the fact that visitors come back year on year pays testament to how much there is for people of all generations to do, see and enjoy. It’s a truly super day out”.

Highlights in the main ring this year will include the ever-popular terrier racing and the thrilling Shetland Pony Grand National – a truly nail biting spectacle featuring some of the UK’s most talented young jockeys, who along with their famously short-legged steeds charge around the course tackling miniature Grand National fences to compete for the winners title.

A firm favourite with families, Cartmel Show offers heaps of ways to keep children entertained, from the new ‘Crazi-Bugz’ all terrain driving experience and a bucking bronco, to circus skills, a bouncy castle, birds of prey and a few creepy crawlies too!

Early Bird tickets are still available to purchase online at www.cartmelshow.com. Trade stand entries have now closed but sponsorship enquiries are welcomed and competitor entries are still open.

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