Countdown on to jam-packed Great Yorkshire Show

Countdown on to jam-packed Great Yorkshire Show

Published at 4:48pm 20th June 2017.

A thrilling England v New Zealand sheep shearing 'Test Match' is among the many highlights of this year's Great Yorkshire Show.

Organisers are also promising other new events and a host of special guests over three days in July.

Agriculture remains firmly at the heart of the show, and this year, as well as the thousands of cattle, sheep, pigs, pigeons and ponies, the British Charolais Cattle Society is holding its Summer National Show, with around 75 cattle expected.

The Ford and Fordson Association is celebrating the 100-year anniversary of tractor production with a display of tractors and machinery on the President's Lawn.

This includes early Fordson and Ford tractors, right through to the current New Holland range supplied by Russells.

Atkinson Action Horses from East Yorkshire, whose TV stunt horses have appeared in Poldark, Victoria and Peaky Blinders, will make their debut and perform stunts and tricks in the main ring each afternoon.

They will be among the first users of the newly-revamped Collecting Ring, which has seen the Yorkshire Agricultural Society invest £70,000 to improve conditions under the direction of Olympic showjumping legend Graham Fletcher.

Also in the main ring, military parachute display team RAF Falcons will jump from the skies in their Great Yorkshire Show debut at 12.35pm on Tuesday.

Great Yorkshire Show

Some of the trophies up for grabs at the Great Yorkshire Show

Over at the fashion pavilion, there's everything from John Lewis and James Steward to fashion students and Brook Taverner which is behind Yorkshire Agricultural Society's tweed jackets.

For the first time ever, the fashion show will raise money for Yorkshire Cancer Centre in Leeds as a thank you for its support for a team member.

Tuesday will also see famous faces from the world of sport and TV take to the stage in a very special one-off fashion show at 2.30pm.

There will be four fashion shows each day at 11am, 12.30pm, 2.30pm and 4pm.

Other celebrity guests include Rosemary Shrager who will cook up a storm in the Food Theatre (Hall 1) and the VetSpec Game Cookery Theatre every day.

BBC gardening expert Carol Klein will give talks in the Garden Show on Thursday.

There will be film crews following some of the guests, including Julian Norton and Peter Wright who will feature in a special edition of The Yorkshire Vet.

They will chat to visitors at a meet and greet stand at the entrance to the Home and Gift Hall, and the hour-long episode filmed at the Great Yorkshire Show will be broadcast in early October.

Documentary From Skye With Love will follow competitor Donald Rankin as he enters his Aberdeen Angus cattle who have achieved success at shows throughout Scotland.

Rugby AM and Leeds Rhinos TV will bring rugby stars to the show for the first time, many of whom are from farming families.

The sheep shearing 'Test Match' on Wednesday will see Adam Berry, Dean Nelmes and Anthony Rook represent England and go up against current world champion Johnny Kirkpatrick and Rowland Smith from New Zealand.

Visitors can take a virtual pig tour every day, at 11am and 2pm, with sisters Vicky Scott and Kate Moore who run a family farm in East Yorkshire.

Their indoor breeding unit at Pockthorpe Hall, near Driffield, houses 1,700 sows and their outdoor unit at East Knapton is home to 1,200 outdoor sows.

Live milking will be happening once again at the Lely stand, where visitors will see calves being trained to feed on an automated calf feeder.

This is the first year that calves on an automated feeding system have featured at the show and will demonstrate how calves can be reared away from their mother.

A revolutionary robot designed for solid floor cleaning, called Discovery 120 Collector, will also be showcased.

Beef Shorthorn breeders are expected to turn out an entry to match their 2016 record.

Great Yorkshire Show - Charles Mills

Show Director Charles Mills

The Great Yorkshire Show is also a family affair for many, including the Prest family who have clocked up more than 150 years stewarding the sheep section.

There's also a family of pole climbers heading to this year's show, when Great British Champion Daniel Whelan competes with girlfriend Emma Cakebread and his grandad, 84-year-old George Tipping, who has been the oldest competitor for many years.

Show Director Charles Mills said: "We have such an exciting and eclectic mix of displays and demonstrations, seminars and shows, we can't wait to welcome visitors again this year.

"Agriculture remains at the very heart of the Great Yorkshire Show, and while we endeavor to showcase the very best of rural life, we try to do this in an interesting, fun and memorable way. We look forward to seeing you in three weeks' time!"

The 159th Great Yorkshire Show will take place in Harrogate from Tuesday 11 to Thursday 13 July.

More information at