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Organisers of Wayland Show appeal to council for support

PUBLISHED: 13:11 07 June 2019 | UPDATED: 13:11 07 June 2019

Wayland Agricultural Show, 2018. Alex Skipper and his daughter Evie, 2, looking at the cattle.
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Wayland Agricultural Show, 2018. Alex Skipper and his daughter Evie, 2, looking at the cattle. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2018

The organisers of a long running summer event have appealed to a town council for help.

Wayland Agricultural Show, 2018.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYWayland Agricultural Show, 2018. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The Wayland Agricultural Show, founded more than 140 years ago, attracts up to 10,000 visitors each year to the showground outside Watton.

But this year the directors and committee decided to move the volunteer-run show from its traditional August date to the earlier May Bank Holiday weekend from 2020 as they seek to modernise its attractions and maximise its potential attendance.

The committee has appealed to Watton Town Council for assistance in the running of the show and have asked to attend a meeting to discuss how the council could be able to help.

Ian Whettingsteel, committee member of the Wayland Agricultural Society, wrote to the council. He said: "We are keen to forge partnerships with local organisations for our mutual benefit, and to obtain practical support with the organisation and running of The Wayland Show.

Wayland Agricultural Show, 2018.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYWayland Agricultural Show, 2018. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

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"We are receiving wonderful support from a number of organisations, but we really need the show to develop and adopt new ideas in order to survive for the benefit of future generations.

"In addition to our traditional livestock competitions, we are planning new 'entertainment' within the showground."

In preparation for the next show the committee is asking for support in trade stands, marketing/publicity, members marquee, and the food and drink hall

Wayland Agricultural Show, 2018.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYWayland Agricultural Show, 2018. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

"The Wayland Show has been a much loved feature in our local calendar," Mr Whettingsteel added, "and can trace its heritage back to the early 19th Century when The Wayland Association was giving prizes and arranging exhibitions of the livestock, pets and garden produce of cottage dwellers on Lord Walsingham's land.

"These followed on from Watton's annual fayres that were recorded as long ago as 1460."

Chairman Michael Gouldstone said: "From time to time a show must revitalise and have appealed to Watton council to see if they could be a part of that.

"We want to get more involved with the local farming community and the surrounding population would like to know if they want to be involved."

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