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The 122nd annual Lochaber Agricultural Show takes place this Saturday, August 24, and it promises to be another unmissable day out for all the family.
Held by permission of Ewen Campbell at Inverlochy Castle Farm, in a spectacular setting against the backdrop of Ben Nevis, the show is a celebration of the area’s rich farming heritage and allows visitors to savour the very best of Scottish country life and lifestyle.
The livestock judging of cattle and sheep commences at 9.30am, with main ring attractions getting under way at 12.30pm.
These include Highland dancing, terrier racing, horse fancy dress, Highland stalking pony demonstration, sheep shearing, a children’s pet parade, equine gymkhana and much more.
The Lochaber food and craft tent provides a perfect showcase for high-quality local produce, while other attractions at the family-friendly show include children’s rides and inflatables, and a chance to have a ride on the Argocats.
Target sports including archery and air rifle ‘have a go stands’ always add a competitive edge to the day.
Nevis Cycles and Lochaber Environmental Group will be on the field to offer free children’s bike events and competitions, and free bike maintenance checks. There will also be free electric bike demo rides.
The livestock judging which include blackface sheep, cross sheep, cattle including Highland and judges will again have a tough job on their hands.
As well as rewarding the most outstanding entries in each breed, the event underlines the high standards of the industry as a whole.
The best jumpers, though, will be determined at the horse and pony show and gymkhana as local riders compete for the prized rosettes and silverware.
Horse power of a very different kind can be admired at the small vintage machinery display, while the vintage tractor parade is another popular spectacle.
Making its return after many years absence is the dog show which is sure to be very popular and fun.
Lochaber Schools Pipe Band will open and close the show and will play a number of stirring tunes, while Highland dancers will bring another element of traditional culture to the occasion. There will also be live music throughout the day with various groups.
The varied range of trade, catering and charity stands will add further interest and help create a bustling and colourful show-day atmosphere.
There will also be birds of prey on show and the ferrets are always a popular attraction with all ages.
Nevis Community Radio will be there broadcasting seven hours of live reports and music from the show starting at 10am.
The quality of livestock on display last year was commended by judges, especially as the climate had been remarkably wet on the build-up to the show.
The handicraft tent this year boasts 130 classes – including home baking, vegetables, photography and flower arranging – and these categories are sure to be just as keenly contested this time. There are classes for schoolchildren from playgroup/nursery to high school (up to fourth-
John Weller of the Lochaber Agricultural Society, said: ‘All we can do now is pray for a fine dry day and hope all who attend have a fun and enjoyable experience.
‘We must express our appreciation to all the organisations and individuals that donate much-needed financial support and services to help the show be the standard that it is.
‘The show is organised and put on by a very small but dedicated team of volunteers who work together to stage the showcase to local rural life and living.’
Gates open at 9am with free parking. Entry is £8 per adult, concessions £6, children 16 and under free. Keep up to date with the Lochaber Agricultural Society via its website www.lochaberagriculturalshow.co.uk and Facebook page.