Why 'unluckiest' village show in Harrogate district may change date

Dangerous Steve in action entertaining the crowds at Birstwith Show. (Picture by Gerard Binks)
Dangerous Steve in action entertaining the crowds at Birstwith Show. (Picture by Gerard Binks)

It's, perhaps, the greatest village show in North Yorkshire but it's also, in one way only, the unluckiest.

Now the organisers of Birstwith Show may go as far as to discuss a change of date after the event was hit by dreadful weather for the third time in five years.

One of the Harrogate district’s longest-standing and most popular village shows, so appalling was the rain on Saturday, this year’s event was nearly cancelled.

But with the show boasting an 152-year pedigree, the organisers were determined the show would go on.

Birstwith Show committee member Andrea Walwyn said: “After weighing everything up, potential losses and how long it would rain for, we decided to go ahead.

“There was a small number of people who braved the rain to spectate and enjoyed themselves but nearly all of the exihibitors brought their produce and the marquee was full.”

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Although the show was not hit by a mini-tornado like the previous year, or the major flooding of a few years earlier, the non-stop rain had a major impact on all concerned.

Andrea Walwyn said: “We still had quite a few trade stands and the Lurcher racing and Dangerous Steve carried on in spite of the weather.

“I have no idea how Steve juggled a chainsaw and knives standing on a bike in torrential rain.”

Birstwith Show, which first took place in 1867, is run by Birstwith Horticultural Society and combines aspects of a traditional rural show with a sense of fun and modernity.

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