Page last updated at 21:10 GMT, Thursday, 3 July 2008 22:10 UK

Royal Show hopes for bumper year

Royal Show
More than 140,000 people are expected over four days

Royal Show organisers are confident this year's event will pass without a hitch after last year's show was forced to close a day early.

Muddy conditions forced the Warwickshire show, one of the largest agricultural shows in Europe, to close.

Organisers say this year the site is dry. But some animal numbers are down markedly due to movement restrictions to counter bluetongue disease.

The four-day event takes place at Stoneleigh Park.

A spokesman said last year's show had been affected by extremely wet weather throughout June while this year the site was dry.

However, restrictions on animal movements in bluetongue surveillance and protection zones has reduced the number of animals on show, with cattle down by 1,000 to only 200.

The number of sheep is down from about 1,600 to 400.

National Farmers' Union spokesman Alistair Johnson said it was "disappointing" for the public and the show but the precautions were vital for protecting livestock.

'Horrendous rain'

Highlights will include a visit from the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall on Friday.

Meanwhile, more than 5,000 school children are expected to visit during the first two days.

Advertisement

Farmers have been affected by the restrictions

Royal Show spokesman Denis Chamberlain said that last year's heavy rain throughout June had meant the ground was saturated before the show got under way.

"Then, when we got more rain it could not run off," he said.

"This year, the showground is in a perfect condition. Conditions on Thursday morning were perfect, it was cool and a little damp."

This year, for the first time, the Royal Show is being held over a weekend so more people can visit.

Organisers said they normally expected up to 140,000 visitors, but were hoping for increased figures this year.




SEE ALSO
Royal Show announces date change
07 Aug 07 |  Coventry/Warwickshire
Royal Show to close a day early
03 Jul 07 |  Coventry/Warwickshire

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific