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Village show near Harrogate defies freak storm

Children enjoying one of the races at Birstwith Show. (1807283AM4)
Children enjoying one of the races at Birstwith Show. (1807283AM4)

Harrogate army cadets came to the rescue after a freak storm threatened a village show.

One of the oldest rural shows still in existence in the Harrogate district, this year's Birstwith Show ended up a big hit again - once the young soldiers from the Army Foundation College had stepped into help!


Birstwith Show committee member Andrea Walwyn said: "The show was a great success considering the weather at the start of the day.


"We had a 15 minute freak storm which lifted the marquee and blew down the fridges and cut the power for half an hour.


"Thankfully, soldiers from Harrogate stepped in and held down the marquee until it could be set back up."


This year's Birstwith Show, the 151th since the first one took place in a tent in 1867, showed it's still as popular as ever.


Despite a few worrying moments early on, the hard-working volunteers who do all the organising in this village near Hampsthwaite ensured the crowds had a great time on Saturday.
As well as the traditional aspects of a rural show - animal classes, awards and trophies for horticulture, arts and crafts, cookery and flower arranging,there was also live music, children's entertainment, the Show Princess with a guard of honour and food and drink.


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Saturday's show also saw the return for the first time in 25 years of horses with a display which managed to defy the elements.


Andrea said: "The galloping acrobatic horses carried on in the show ring, which was a great spectacle, while everyone took shelter.
"The weather did cause us problems as it was raining so hard first thing, that we had a couple of trade stand cancellations.
"But the sun came out at 11am which brought people out a little later.


"By 2.30pm the show field was full and probably on a par with last year. People did seem in very good humour despite the showers.
"The evening event was the busiest yet finished off with a spectacular fire display."

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