Despite unwarranted worries about the weather, crowds flocked to this year’s Royal Manx Agricultural Show, which attracted lots of visitors through the gates at Knockaloe Farm in Patrick on both days, to the delight of organisers.
With much on offer to suit everyone’s taste, it was a great opportunity for sightseers to familiarise themselves with some fabulous local food and drink and enjoy a wide range of entertainment. It’s also a good time to chat face to face with local farmers and learn more about the livestock brought along for annual competitions, culminating in the Grand Parade and the selection of the Supreme Champion at the close of the event.
The main entertainment ring sported an extensive programme, including lurcher racing, classic car and vintage tractor parades, sheep dog demonstrations and the Jez Avery Stunt Show which drew onlookers throughout the event, as well as the popular Spike Milton’s Teme Timbersports who used a separate arena.
This long standing event is a highlight of the Manx calendar, and with a whole day (or two) to fill there was ample time to wander amongst various trade stands and glimpse some of the wonderful work presented by local craft workers.
There was also plenty for youngsters to see across the site, including some fabulous birds and animals in the much loved (if somewhat noisy) Fur and Feather tent, kittens for cuddling and rides on the funfair before heading for the ubiquitous ice cream van.
Local producers were out in force, deservedly showing their wares at the Manx Food Court and selling much of it to customers old and new, with other locally sourced food available elsewhere on the show ground.
But the nearby Farm and Garden marquee also presented the unmistakable skills of those who can turn their hand readily to growing fruit, vegetables and flowers, as well as domestic cooks and bakers hoping for prizes in a sometimes hotly contested arena. Categories included such delights as home-made bread, succulent drop scones and cakes, luscious butter and jam and a whole host of cordials utilising all the great benefits of a Manx harvest.
© August 2018