Record numbers expected at show

RECORD numbers of people are today expected to pour through the gates of Trinity Park for the second day of the Suffolk Show.

Russell Claydon

RECORD numbers of people are today expected to pour through the gates of Trinity Park for the second day of the Suffolk Show.

The sun was shining on the second day of Suffolk's spectacular agricultural event and crowds were expected to swell to 86,000, well up on the 76,356 who turned out in 2007.

Grey skies failed to dampen spirits on the first day of the show with the appearance of super model Claudia Schiffer adding some extra spice to the biggest event in the county's social calendar.

Also spotted among the thousands of people who flocked to the event yesterday was Marks and Spencer Chief Executive Sir Stuart Rose.

Held by the Suffolk Agricultural Association the event's 177th show wowed crowds on its first day with dazzling displays in the Grand Ring and plenty to see on the stalls.

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The specialist police horse team Equimax are set to re-run their dare devil brand of show jumping through rings of fire again today.

Visitors who turned out early this morning were also eagerly anticipating the appearance of the X-Treme Trials Motocross Team in the President's Ring this afternoon.

Vintage tractors, donkey driving and jive ponies were just some of the unusual attractions entertaining the crowds at Trinity Park today, with experts on hand in the Lifestyle Pavilion to pass on some more tips to homemakers.

The curtain will finally come down on the county's premier family day out, which has seen nearly 700 livestock and equine classes competing for £70,000 in prize money, in the Grand Ring at 5.25pm this evening with the National Anthem formally ending the show.

Christopher Bushby, Executive Director of the show said: “We started the day very early and the crowds have been coming in since 7.30am. We had a very good show yesterday which was very well attended. I would hope we will hit our five year average which is around 86,000 people and that is a good crowd here.

“The food experience with Adnams is going down very well. The Sports Village has been excellent and of course watching people going up and down the livestock and equine lines is great. The children's farm has also been a big favourite.

“There is always new content at the show even though the format stays the same. We have been particularly pleased at bringing the Metropolitan Police Activity Ride to Suffolk for the first time.

“We are trying to bring the show to life this year and make it interactive for people coming. At the end of the day it is volunteers putting this together and they are very proud of what they are doing and this reflects what the county is about.”

Angie Ashby-Hoare, organiser of the Luxurious Lifestyle Pavilion, who has worked at the show for 26 years, said: “Today is going really well. We had a very positive day yesterday with lots of people and the exhibitors were very upbeat about it. The pavilion is something different on the showground and there is a great atmosphere here.”

Jonathon and Celia Gordon from Shelley near Hadleigh have been attending the show for 25 years on their basket making stall but this year they were visitors.

Mrs Gordon said: “It is a social event and there is such a lovely atmosphere. It is really well organised and there is so much to see and do. It is nice to see the Suffolk Show has not become a car display event and that it is kept to its rural roots.”

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