Page last updated at 20:12 GMT, Tuesday, 8 July 2008 21:12 UK

Greatest show on turf opens gates

Generic picture of livestock and exhibitor at the show
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are attending to the show

Thousands of visitors attended the largest agricultural show in the north of England which has opened its gates for a three-day event.

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are also visiting the Harrogate-based Great Yorkshire Show, which is celebrating its 150th anniversary.

It will be the first time the Queen has attended the three-day event since 1977, her Silver Jubilee year.

Disease precautions have seen some livestock classes restricted.

Bluetongue restrictions have meant no goat classes at this year's show, while cattle numbers are down by 40%.

About 900 stands and stalls were set up at the site, off Wetherby Road, which expects to see 120,000 farmers and visitors from across the UK go through its gates.

'Great honour'

Show director Bill Cowling said: "We are delighted that The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh are visiting the Great Yorkshire Show, particularly during this, our 150th show.

"It is a great honour to welcome royal visitors to the showground."

Last year the number of visitors was down by nearly 10% on 2006 because of damage caused to the showground by June's heavy rainfall and flooding.




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