'Wait and see' for dale's agricultural shows
ORGANISERS of two historic agricultural shows say they will have to “wait and see” if this year’s events can go ahead in the wake of the coronavirus lockdown.
Bowes and Eggleston agricultural shows, which are scheduled to take place on Saturday September 12, and 19, have been hugely popular for the past century and a half.
And although there are still five months until both events take place they take months of planning by teams of volunteers.
However, uncertainty about whether the lockdown restrictions will be eased means planning for both events is on hold for the time being.
Liz Redfern, general secretary for the Bowes Show, said: “There is a lot to do and it will start to be an expense, one that we can’t afford, if it doesn’t go ahead.
“The committee will be meeting soon, but lots of our members are busy working with lambing season at the moment.
“They’re farmers and working really hard. They can’t ask family and friends to help this year and are having to do everything on their own.
“It is difficult and people are struggling, but this is not going to go away.”
Alan Gent, secretary of Eggleston Show, added: “At the moment everything is up in the air. We are getting the schedule all set up should we get the opportunity to go ahead.
“It’s a shame. The last two or three years, the show has picked up and since we have been at Hayberries, at Mickleton, we’ve had more people saying they love it.
“But we have got as much done as we can for now. The committee has a meeting scheduled on May 14, to discuss options. But whether this meeting will be able to go ahead, or be a simple ring around with members we are not sure at the moment.
“The latest option we discussed was to wait until the government reassesses the lockdown tomorrow (Thursday May 7).
“A lot of our committee are well on with their lambing and will be able to spare a couple of hours for a meeting, whichever way we have it.
“We have a lot of stuff in place and if we get the nod from the government we will go ahead.”