Countdown is on for 185th county show

Rutland County Show 2016. Champion native Breed went to a Hereford owned by Ryan Coates and presented by Jeff Dale
Photo: Alan Walters
Rutland County Show 2016. Champion native Breed went to a Hereford owned by Ryan Coates and presented by Jeff Dale Photo: Alan Walters
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The countdown is on for the 185th Rutland County Show which will be held in less than a month’s time.

The show is a highlight in the county’s event calendar and will this year take place on Sunday, June 4.

The heavy horses classes, last seen at the show in 1953, will be returning this year and are among the highlights. Showing in-hand and ridden classes this year, with the supreme championship held in the main ring.

The show prides itself on keeping its traditional values; showcasing local food, farming and craft.

“It boasts more than 1,000 livestock including cattle, sheep, goats and poultry, on the showground and more than 600 horse and ponies; each competing for either the Royal International showing classes or British Showjumping 
qualifiers.

These classes are set against the backdrop of local and artisan food producers, rural crafters and, of course, the individually chosen high quality retail 
outlets.

Show director Emma Dodds said: “The last three shows at the new showground have seen an increase in visitor numbers which is a great sign of the event’s success, so to ensure traffic flows more efficiently, we’re introducing a new traffic management plan which will divert non-show traffic through Oakham as well as speed up access to the showground.”

The main ring attractions at the Rutland Show are a celebration of the working animal. This year they feature Atkinson Action Horses.

New to the main ring this year are the championships for both the Royal International Lead Rein Show Ponies and Heavy Horse In-Hand classes, along with the traditional Ridden Hunter classes in the morning.

Emma added: “The return of the heavy horses is in part thanks to the passion of local Rutlander, Helen Chester, who is part of the Faulkner family from Cottesmore. Helen has been showing Clydesdales for years and approached us to see if they could be re-introduced to the Rutland Show once again, which of course we were overjoyed about.”

They make their debut this year along with the new vintage fun fair and music in the food courts in the form of local ‘The D’Ukes of Rutland’, an Oakham based ukulele ensemble, joined by a Dixieland band ‘The Wississippi Jazz Band’ EAGA Gospel Choir and the Melton Band.

Also, featuring this year are the comical Ridgeside team with their fantastic lurchers and terriers doing what comes naturally to them. In the arena they will race, at full speed, chasing an electric lure.

They offer a fast, action-packed demonstration with an informative and humorous commentary. The public will then have the chance to ‘have a go’ with their own 
dogs.

Other attractions include the old favourites; the Cottesmore Hunt, the Military Dogs from St George’s Barracks and the vintage car and tractor parades. However, the highlight of the day is always the grand parade, bringing together the prize winners from the showing classes in a spectacular narrated procession.

Tickets are available at www.rutlandcountyshow.com and at Walkers bookshops in Oakham and Stamford, as well as Uppingham Sports and Books, for £10, before May 29, then £12.50 online and on the gate.

Children 16 and under go free and a free shuttle bus will operate from Uppingham and Oakham throughout the 
day.