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In pictures: Looking back at Turriff Show as event celebrates 160 years of farming and fun

As Turriff Show marks a milestone 160th anniversary this August, we've taken a look back at archive photos of the popular show over the decades.

1979: Welly boots were a must at the show ... and in their element as they slush through are, from left, Lesley Low (6), Turriff; Lewis Stewart (10), Rothienorman; David Low (7) and Amanda Rainger (4), both Turriff.
Image: DC Thomson
1979: Welly boots were a must at the show ... and in their element as they slush through are, from left, Lesley Low (6), Turriff; Lewis Stewart (10), Rothienorman; David Low (7) and Amanda Rainger (4), both Turriff. Image: DC Thomson

Turriff Show is undeniably the highlight of the agricultural show calendar with its long tradition stretching back 160 years.

Like the livestock exhibited at the event, Turriff Show has a rich lineage woven through generations of the north-east farming community.

The first meeting of the Turriff Agricultural Association took place on July 26 1864, the year after the Banffshire Farmer Club amalgamated with Turriff District Society.

1968: An aerial view of the Turriff Show taken in 1968.

Now the two-day show attracts 24,000 visitors a year and is set to celebrate its 160th anniversary in August.

First show was resounding success in 1864

The inaugural meeting at the Haughs in 1864 was hailed as “a promising commencement” with 300 cattle and horses shown.

Cattle judges that year included names and farms still familiar today, including Mr Stephen of Conglass, Inverurie; Mr Reid from Greystone, Alford, and Mr Stoddart of Muiryfold, Grange.

As well as cattle, horses, swine, sheep, poultry, dairy produce and agricultural implements were shown.

The parade of prize cattle at Turriff Show in 1937. Image: DC Thomson

While the celebratory show dinner for dozens of farmers was hosted at Mrs Chisholm’s Inn, Turriff, with Garden William Duff of Hatton as chairman.

He was supported by Reverend Gray of Auchterless and Mr Urquhart of Meldrum House.

After the event it was reported that: “The exhibition in every class was most credible to the spirit, enterprise, and skill of the agriculturists in this flourishing district.”

And that enduring spirit and enterprise has ensured Turriff Show has continued 160 years on.

1964: Bogtown Lady Edith 18th, belonging to Ian Masson of Bogtown, Portsoy, was winner of the supreme championship of all pig breeds at the show. Image: DC Thomson

Its roots are still reflected in traditional classes of livestock, equestrian, small animals and dogs, making it highly regarded on the ‘show circuit’.

But as well as the heritage element, the show also has 300 trade stands, vintage vehicles and exciting exhibits for all ages.

‘There’s nothing quite like Turriff Show’

This year, Kipperridge Gundogs will bring world-class displays from Crufts to the Turriff showring, and sheep will also taking to the stage to perform in The Sheep Show.

As the show marks its 160-year milestone, David Allan, president and main sponsor, said “there’s nothing better that connects agriculture to the people as brilliantly as Turriff Show”.

1939: Young Farmers (then junior farmers’ club) at Turriff Show on August 2 1939 just weeks before the Second World War broke out. Image: DC Thomson

While show secretary Gail Greig added: “There is nothing quite like Turriff Show – a fantastic family day out to experience a range of activities.”

Like most of attendees and exhibitors, Mr Allan is hoping for good weather after a wet start to the year.

But our archive photos prove that whatever the weather, Turriff Show always pulls in the punters whatever the weather.

In pictures: Turriff Show over the decades

1971: Judging the dairy produce at Turriff Show, Mrs N Souter and Miss HM Wood taste the salad creams. Image: DC Thomson
1976: Busy judging the Suffolk sheep is Michael Walton at the Turriff Show in 1976. Image: DC Thomson
1975: Supreme cattle champion at Turriff Show was the top-quality Beef Shorthorn bull from William Anderson, Oldmeldrum. Image: DC Thomson
1979: “This tractor is 38 years older than me,” says two-year-old Kevin McDonald, Aberdeen, as he sits on an American-built 1939 Farmall (Model A) tractor belonging to North-east agricultural engineers Geo Sellar and Son. Looking on are friends Sheila and Aileen Stott. Image: DC Thomson
1978: One of the big attractions of the Turriff Show were the Clydesdales, and a large crowd gathers to watch this one, owned by Mr M Allan, Springburn, Kintore, prepare for the show ring. Image: DC Thomson
1981: All hands on deck… Tradesmen buckle down to the usual preparatory work ahead of Turriff Show. In the picture with show president Wesley Simpson and secretary Eric Mutch, are – Eric Murray, Mike Cowie, Jock Hay, John Elphinstone, Arthur Durno and Eric Mutch Jnr. Image: DC Thomson
1979: Welly boots were a must at the show … and in their element as they slush through are, from left, Lesley Low (6), Turriff; Lewis Stewart (10), Rothienorman; David Low (7) and Amanda Rainger (4), both Turriff. Image: DC Thomson
1985: A sunny smile from Alex Pirie (9), Westfield, Turriff, as he and his dog, Roy, pose in a sea of mud at Turriff Show after Roy won the Champion Collie award. Image: DC Thomson
1986: Standing Guard… six-year-old mare Porcelain keeps an eye on her owner Percy Watt at the 1986 Turriff Show. Image: DC Thomson
1987: The Russell family of Westland, Hill of Rora, Longside, attending the Turriff Show. The Russells went home with rosettes for their donkeys, Daisy and Emily. Here five-year-old Ewen shows the family champions. Image: DC Thomson
1985: Turriff four-year-old Marilyn Pirie, Westfield, found herself in a sticky situation at the Turriff Show – she was determined to enjoy her toffee apple. As she makes her way through the glaur, it looks like a clear case of hanging on to what you have if you want to taste sweet success! Image: DC Thomson
1977: Johan Jamieson from Path-head Farm, Cruden Bay, gets a helping hand from her two sons as she grooms Nathan, her Blonde D’Aquitaine calf before going into the show ring. The boys are Ian (15) and David (12). Image: DC Thomson
1984: First year with the Turriff Pipe band as a piper was 12-year-old Andrew Mackay, 13, Banff. He is joined by Emma Perryment from Huntly, left, and Lynda McKilligin, Turriff. Image: DC Thomson
1981: An attentive crowd around the judging of the overall sheep championship at Turriff. In the foreground is the Jacob tup Moses, owned by G Leslie, Boggieshalloch, Turriff, but the championship went to James Wilson, Barnyards, Mintlaw, for a two crop Suffolk ewe. Image: DC Thomson
1989: Coach James Norrie provides the verbal encouragement as the Turriff Show team take the strain in the tug o’ war contest. Image: DC Thomson
1979: Turriff woman Jeannie Minty, Turriff, saw the fruits of her labours well rewarded when she won the best exhibit prize at the show. Her helper, eight-year-old Gwen Esslemont, Banff, enjoyed the rich pickings afterwards. Image: DC Thomson
1982: Looking over the prize-winning vegetables at the show are visitors, from left, William and Isobel Cockburn, Whitehills, and Bill and Grace Hay, Aberdeen. Image: DC Thomson
1971: Fiona-Anne Fraser, North east Young Farmers’ organiser, tries out the winning entry in the North of Scotland College of Agriculture contest for ideas that work. It’s a self-propelled silage barrow, built from a crashed car by Mr  Horne, Parkbin, Fyvie. Image: DC Thomson
1981: Three young ladies and their pets make a charming picture as they wait for the judging in the Collie section. From the left Kim Innes (15), Braehead, Craigellachie, with Chip; Caroline Moir (14), Backhill, Oldmeldrum, with Spot, and Frances Sangster (17), North Eddieston, Skene, with Nell. Image: DC Thomson
1981: Ice creams all round for Leslie Mutch, Mains of Carnoustie, Turriff, and Robin Michie, Bankhead, New Aberdour, with family and young friends. Image: DC Thomson
1988: Turriff Venture Scout Paul Peppiette goes “over the top” at the Turriff Show, helping to raise money for the people of Nepal. He and other members of the Deveron Valley and 1st Fyvie Venture Scouts were climbing a 40ft tower at the show 726 times – equivalent to the height of Mount Everest. Image: DC Thomson
1988: Susan Fraser and her mother Mary Seivwright of Rothienorman show off their winning donkeys: Contessa, left, who won the Best Mare Class and Choir Master who won the overall prize for best donkey. Image: DC Thomson
1989: In action at the Turriff Show was Ossie Grady of Mintlaw, one of the men performing with the Royal Signals motorcycle display team, otherwise known as the White Helmets. Ossie is seen here driving through the fire wall. Image: DC Thomson
1987: Part of the crowd who attended the Turriff Show enjoying the sunshine at the Haughs. Image: DC Thomson
1987: Turriff vet Bob Deans marches with his ‘troops’ ready for the showring spectacle of the line up of horses, each section marked by these youngsters with their signs. Image: DC Thomson
1974: Competitors in the Sulky Handicap Trot race neck and neck in the arena at the Turriff Show. Image: DC Thomson
1988: Getting the showground ready is an enjoyable task for, from left, Alan Gaul, Kevin Gray and Duncan Wilson, painting the stock pens. Image: DC Thomson
1982: A young bull calf is groomed before the judging by, from left, Roy McDonald (14), Blelack Farm, Dinnet; David Stephen (13), Conglass, Inverurie, and Michael Massie (13), also Blelack Farm, Dinnet. Image: DC Thomson

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