Page last updated at 14:22 GMT, Sunday, 5 July 2009 15:22 UK

Organisers prepare for final show

Previous Royal Show
The show has become less popular, organisers say

Organisers are preparing for the final Royal Show, which will end this year because of falling visitor numbers.

The show, which will be the 160th, will be held at Stoneleigh, Warwickshire from Tuesday to Friday.

The Royal Agricultural Society of England (Rase) said in April the event was no longer financially viable and would not continue in its present form.

Percy Dodd, foreman of the grand ring for 43 years, said he hoped it would be replaced by an event "as professional".

He said the show had "altered a lot" over the years.

Sad farewell

"I'm really going to miss the Royal Show. You meet so many nice people here and you miss them. Comradeship - that's what it is about.

"But the show goes on. They'll think of something else in this 200 acres or whatever it is. And I just hope it's as professional as the Royal Show."

Trustees chairman Hugh Oliver Bellasis has cited foot-and mouth, bad weather and bluetongue among causes for the difficulty in attracting visitors.

"I hope people will bid a fond farewell to an event that has long been held in great affection by farmers and others who work and live in the British countryside," he said.

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