Spirits not dampened at show

DESPITE a wet start nothing could dampen the enthusiasm today of visitors and exhibitors to the final day of the Suffolk Show.As the drizzle continued to fall thousands passed through the gates to take part in the county's biggest event of the year.

DESPITE a wet start nothing could dampen the enthusiasm today of visitors and exhibitors to the final day of the Suffolk Show.

As the drizzle continued to fall thousands passed through the gates to take part in the county's biggest event of the year.

As music played in the bandstand for the crowds the atmosphere was relaxed as visitors enjoyed the show's wide range of attractions.

In the cattle stalls Norfolk farmer Stephen Yarham celebrated after his Highland cow and calf scooped a first prize. Mr Yarham said: “We only brought the two animals so we are really pleased. The Suffolk Show is a long way for us but there is a great atmosphere and it hasn't lost its agricultural roots.”

Tractor enthusiast David Sillett of Earl Soham exhibited his 1948 Field Marshall Tractor. He said: “I enjoy looking at farming as it used to be and I'm interested in farming machinery. I've been coming since 1989.”

Show jewellers Thurlow Champness were busy throughout the two-day event as they organised the engraving of more than 150 silver cups and shields won by exhibitors. Trevor Salt, director of the Bury St Edmunds' based firm said: “There are about 160 cups and trophies. We try to engrave them as the results come through, it's very hectic but we always enjoy being here.”

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Flower show gold medal winner Ben Potterton, of Blacksmiths Cottage Nursery in Diss summed up the atmosphere in the popular flower tent. He said: “It's very friendly and the Suffolk Show is very well organised. There is a buzz about the tent when people come in. We've done a display of a series of perennial flowers including iris, lupin and geranium that can be grown on Suffolk soil. It's great to be recognised for what we do.”

Visitors Helen Cutting, of Cotton brought her two children Emmie, six and Samuel three, to the show. Speaking from the Suffolk Tourism Village Mrs Cutting said: “It's a lovely day out, there is lots for the children and it's great for them to be able to get close to all the animals which they really enjoy.”

In the Suffolk Skills marquee, Suffolk College workshop instructor Mark Thornton was overseeing students involved in a competition between Otley, West Suffolk and Suffolk colleges, he said: “This competition gives the public the chance to see the college and the work the students do. We have a display of a variety of trades including carpentry, plastering, flint knapping and plumbing. It's hard work for the students but there has been a lot of interest from the public which has been great to see.”

Worth an estimated £20 million to the Suffolk economy the Suffolk Show was expected to draw about 95,000 visitors. The £3.2 million Trinity Park Conference and Events Centre which houses a luxurious lifestyle pavilion, the shows newest attraction, was official opened by the Duke of Gloucester yesterday.

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