An excellent haul of entries and crowds of between 4,000 and 5,000 ensured this year’s Peebles Agricultural Show was a huge success.
Even the weather, which offered a pretty wet start, played ball in the end, delivering a fine and dry afternoon.
As ever, the highlight of any agricultural show is the parade of livestock and the choosing of the champion of champions and reserve, which this year both went to Borders entries.
It was a blue-faced Leicester lamb shown by Alan McClymont, of Kirk Stead, Yarrow, near Selkirk, which swept the boards at the Nether Horsburgh Farm show ground will on Saturday.
The show-topping traditional-style two-shear tup, which earlier in the day had taken the William Forbes Cup for sheep inter-breed champion, before adding the Jimmy Johnston Trophy for overall show champion kept the winning momentum going after previous success at the Royal Highland Show near Edinburgh in June.
It was bred by John Dykes, of West Linton, and was bought at last year’s Kelso tup sale and has quickly proved its worth.
And it wasn’t just the sheep classes boasting championship winning entries.
The overall reserve champion title went to Clive Storey’s coloured horse under saddle, which took home the Graham Irvine Cup for light horse champion earlier in the day. The Yetholm horse trainer enjoyed previous success at this year’s Border Union Show at Kelso, being named champion of champions there last month.
Show president Bill Brown was delighted by both the number and quality of entries on the day.
He said: “Entries were very good this year. Sheep were a bit down after last year but probably just back to normal levels. We always have good entries of sheep, especially the blackies section.
“We also had new classes for north country Cheviot sheep which saw good entries.
“Cattle were up on last year and our poultry entry in particular this year was epic.
“It’s the most poultry we have ever had, with over 500 birds and 200 entries of eggs.
“The horses were down a little bit, but we have been a bit plagued by wet weather in the last two really wet years, so that has maybe put some people off, not to mention other events falling on the same day.
“We have entries from far and wide – hens from Ireland, cows and sheep from northern England and Fife. We also had visitors from Austria, France, America and Hungary.”
For those visitors, the show boasted a variety of activities including the traditional favourites such as carriage- driving, showjumping, stock judging and a vintage tractor exhibition.
Children enjoyed the birds of prey exhibit while the main ring entertainment came from the Clan, one of Scotland’s top cycling display teams.
Away from the sheep, cattle, poultry and equestrian classes there were also rabbits, donkeys and dogs on show, not to mention the children’s pet show and the horse fancy dress contest aimed at getting the youngsters involved.
Bill added: “We also had a good number of trade stands and the a good food hall which was showcasing local producers and produce. This is something we are very keen to promote.
“The Clan stunt team put on an excellent biking display.
“Being where we are there are a lot of keen cyclists in the area, so we were pleased to have them entertaining, and they proved a huge hit with the crowd.
“It was a very busy one day show.”
The Royal Bank of Scotland Cup for cattle inter-breed champion went to James Wightman and his simmental heifer.
In the dog exemption, best in show went to Pamela Thomson, of Forth, with her class winning terrier.
The Mascott Bond trophy for the best trade stand went to Haddington-based Garden Solutions, while the James Burrie Perpetual Trophy for the most points went to JP Campbell and Sons, of Glenrath.
The best craft stand title was awarded to John Cowan Baskets, a Lanark-based traditional wicker basket maker.
The trophies were presented by the president’s wife ,Margaret Brown.