Bumper Crowds for Castlewellan Show As Sun Set To Shine


WITH sunshine forecast for Castlewellan Agricultural Show this coming Saturday, preparations for the popular annual event  are well under way.

Committee members have given the Clough roundabout sculpture a makeover to promote the show to remind passing motorists that County Down’s biggest show is almost here. Over 140 trade stands, dog agility, show jumping, cattle, sheep, goats, poultry and pigs spread across fifty acres will ensure it is set to be a great day out for all the family.

[caption id="attachment_40625" align="alignleft" width="390"]Young James McCauley gets a helping hand from  Fidelma Carolan, Show Marketing Officer, Jackie Fitzpatrick, Show Secretary, Alex Woods, committee member and Michelle McCauley, Castlewellan Show Chairperson for the final promotion for this Saturday's annual event. Young James McCauley gives a helping hand from Fidelma Carolan, Show Marketing Officer, Jackie Fitzpatrick, Show Secretary, Alex Woods, committee member and Michelle McCauley, Castlewellan Show Chairperson for the final promotion for this Saturday’s annual event.[/caption] There is a real focus this year on enabling children to get close to a range of animals with kid goats, the NI Rabbit Club, Sunnyland beagles, flying falcons, World of Owls roadshow and an wide array of livestock.  The County Down Young Farmers are set to entertain the crowds with tug-of-war, tractor driving and games.

Lots of interest already in the Fashion Show and Vintage Tea tent which will feature the Magee clothing range and raise funds for the Northern Ireland Cancer Fund for Children.  Judges will be circulating for the Show’s Best Dressed Lady and Best Dressed Gentlemen –  check out the website for the list of fabulous prizes on offer : www.castlewellanshow.com

The Apprentice’s Nick Hewer will be on the field with his film crew capturing Show highlights for an Autumn edition of Farm Fixer.

Castlewellan Show Chairperperson Michelle McCauley said: “There are over 440 entries for the show-jumping classes and riders can still enter the unaffiliated jumping competition on the day which is organised by Mossvale Riding Club.  The Coolmore Search for a Young Horse championship has attracted a high calibre field and the P Turley Ridden Hunter classes have increased this year.  Entries for the Working Hunter horse and pony classes supported by Burrendale Hotel & Spa,  First Trust Bank, Fresh Food Castlewellan and Redmills are popular as ever.

“The cattle section includes five major championships  All-Ireland Bull & Heifer Derby Limousin final, Ulster Bank National Hereford Show and Bank of Ireland Beef Shorthorn National, Blonde Calf and British Blue Young Bull championships.   The other classes are well subscribed with over 500 quality cattle registered for the day ensuring a high level of competition.

“Once again Castlewellan continues to have the most sheep entries for a one day show with almost 700 across twenty two classes including the national for the Hampshire Downs.   The Danske Bank Interbreed championship and the Norbrook Pair of Ewe Lambs are always the most closely watched events.  The Show is delighted to welcome Dr Jane Guise from the prestigious Royal Bath & West Show as a judge for the Cydectin young handlers competition.”

There is much last minute back room flurry as events are fine tuned. The new two-day back-to-back goat class has resulted in an increase in entries supported by the Goat Club, O’Rourke Timber and The Dealer, with Churchview Goats bringing along some kid goats for children (and adults) to handle.

The pig section supported by Walter Watson engineering is growing in popularity and the poultry classes are varied and promise a good visitor attraction.  Also,  John Thompson and Sons Ltd, P Murphy, Poultry Dealer, Crossgar Foodservice, GB Poultry, and Baileyʼs Judy Maxwell are all on board as sponsors.

In access of 120 dogs will be competing in the Feedwell and Dusty’s Place dog friendly self catering, dog agility classes, so bring a seat along and grab a good spot beside the ring.  This is a very popular event. The Home Industries tent is always a favourite destination for show visitors  and you can peruse the 800 entries in home baking, jams, crafts, photography and art including fifteen scarecrows who will keep the crows at bay.

The Show runs all day and admission is £10 for adults, £5 for Young Farmers (with their card), Under 16’s go free and there is no charge for parking.

For a full list of trade stands and attractions, check the show website on www.castlewellanshow.com