The entries are in and the judges have chosen their winners – all you need to do is visit the Scottish Agricultural Show online to see who has been crowned cream of the crop.
Today marks the start of the two-day virtual event, organised by The Press and Journal and The Courier in partnership with the Royal Highland Show. The event, sponsored by EQ Accountants, aims to fill the void left by the cancellation of summer agricultural events due to the Covid-19 crisis.
Although you won’t be able to see animals in person, have a seat in a shiny new tractor or combine, or taste the latest delights from local food and drink companies, we hope you get your summer show fix over the next two days.
We received more than 400 entries from all over the UK for our livestock and horse competitions, and a range of well-respected judges were tasked with choosing the best beef cattle, dairy cattle, sheep, horses, goats, poultry and young handlers.
One of our sheep judges – Robbie Wilson who runs the Milnbank flock of Texels at North Dorlaithers Farm, near Turriff – praised the quality of the entries. “I was very impressed with the efforts made by all exhibitors for the online show and it was also great to see so many youngsters showing off their stock,” said Mr Wilson.
In addition to the livestock and horses shows, a trio of photo competitions are running for baking, dogs and vintage farm machinery and there is still time to vote for your favourite entries. The winners will be announced tomorrow afternoon along with the overall winners from the main shows and the coveted show champion of champions.
And when you want a break from watching videos of some of the finest livestock and horses in the country, why not visit our virtual food and drink stalls and trade stands? There is something for everyone and unlike traditional shows, you don’t need to pack for every weather. You can enjoy the show from the comfort of your own home.
Letter from the P&J editor-in-chief Frank O’Donnell
Agricultural shows have been part of the fabric of Scotland’s summer for decades.
This year, of course, everything is different.
For businesses. For families. For communities.
Cancellations have become the norm: sporting events; music festivals; climate change conferences; holidays.
All have fallen victim to the Covid-19 pandemic.
It would have been understandable to put a line through agri shows for
2020. But the innovative and creative minds at The Press and Journal – and
our sister title The Courier – would not be beaten.
Today, the first online Scottish Agricultural Show, in partnership with the Royal Highland Show, begins.
Farmers, crofters and members of the public missing out on a trip to their local show are invited to come together (virtually) today and tomorrow.
Although it won’t be possible to walk along the cattle and sheep lines, touch the latest tractors or witness some of the country’s best riders in action, our event offers the chance to get your summer show fix from the safety and comfort of your own home.
Farmers have uploaded videos and pictures of their animals on to the website for everyone to see.
There are also trade stands featuring the latest farm machinery, as well as food and drink sections to showcase the best of Scotland’s larder and a dog photo competition!
Our event has also raised funds for the Royal Highland Education Trust – more than £2,300 so far.
I’ll admit that I was slightly perplexed by the idea of an online show when it was first floated. But the response has been massive.
So whether you are just curious or a competitor, my advice is to scroll up! scroll up!
Scotland’s summer show season is back in business.