Next Show Date: Saturday 21st August 2021
The Sheep section at Gosforth Show attracts the most entries in the livestock section. We have had increased numbers over the last few years in all classes with breeds including the Herdwick bred on the Cumbrian fells, also the North of England Mule and the Continental Texel. We also have classes for Swaledale and our popular Any Other Breed class, which always attracts large entries of many different breeds ranging from UK rare breeds to other Continentals. In 2012 the show held it's first Jacob sheep classes. New in 2015, we will be re-introducing the Suffolk Classes following requests from breeders and in 2017 we introduced the Charolais sheep classes.
Breed championship rosettes will be presented by the Jacob Society and the Charolais Society
Due to the popular any other breed section and the huge variance in breeds we have split this class into Native and Non Native
Young handler classes are now split into 3 classes - under 7 on show day, 7yrs to 10yrs & 11 to 16yrs on show day. To be judged on presentation & turnout of both sheep & handler.
Sheep Schedule and Entry Form
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Cattle will be under cover at the Gosforth Agricultural show
Gosforth Agricutural show is currently in a TB1 area (since 2017), however we are able to be exempt from pre-movement testing because we do not enclose our cattle area and they are not staying overnight.
Cattle and Sheep classes will be held subject to the arrangements being approved by DEFRA and all the exhibitors must make themselves aware of, and comply with the relevant DFFRA regulations in force at the time of the Show.
Cattle Schedule and Entry Form
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Gosforth show hosts a large and expanding variety of horse classes. The show jumping for both pony and horse classes will be run in heights of fence rather than size of animal, so there is a class to suit everyone from the novice horse/rider to the experienced. There will be 3 jumping classes for ponies and 3 for horses.
We have a wide selection of showing classes both ridden and in hand. Our range of ridden horse classes have increased over the years and now include an open hunter class as well as riding horse, hack, cob and the increasingly popular coloured horse / pony class. We also have a special class for local riders.
We hold the elegant side-saddle classes, both showing and an equitation class which is a qualifier for the side saddle association championships. There is a special side-saddle costume concours d’elegance where the ladies will be wearing historical costume which is judged in the main ring where they can be much admired by show spectators.
The main ring will host all the showing classes, especially the in-hand - time will decide if the ridden classes need to be moved into the horse ring over the hill.
We have a special ring for the working hunter classes where there is always a good variety of natural fences to test both horse / pony and rider. In 2011 we introduced a novice working hunter class which proved very successful and in 2018 an open working hunter class over much smaller fences was introduced.
Whether you are an exhibitor or spectator we hope you will enjoy the variety of horse classes.
Heavy horse classes are open to all heavy horse breeds and the ridden Heavy Horse class can be pure or part bred horses but one parent must be a purebred heavy horse.
Notice regarding Equine Influenza
Horses must have been vaccinated to comply with the requirements of the primary course (1st vaccination and then 2nd vaccination between 21-92 days later), followed by the first booster (150-215 days) and all subsequent boosters. Horses may compete having received the primary course and prior to the first booster but not within 7 days of receiving a vaccine dose.
Horses must have been vaccinated within 6 months before the show but not less than 7 days of arriving at the show.
PLEASE NOTE: THAT NEITHER VACCINE CERTIFICATES OR PASSPORTS SHOULD BE SENT TO THE SHOW OFFICE PRIOR TO THE SHOW. HOWEVER, RANDOM CHECKS WILL BE CARRIED OUR ON THE SHOWGROUND DURING THE SHOW.
- In Hand
- Riding Horses
- Hunters Cobs
- Coloured Horse/Pony
- Side Saddle
- Riding Ponies
- Working Hunters
- Heavy Horses
- Mountain & Moorland
- Show Jumping
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The Dog show is a very popular event drawing in both professionals and family pets - whatever category you are in, all dogs are welcome to the Gosforth Agricultural show. The picture is of our 2018 champion called Dappy.
ENTRIES ONLY TAKEN ON THE DAY
Entry Fee £2.00. Judging 11:00am
Prizes are: 1st £4: 2nd £2: 3rd £1
Rosettes to third place JUDGE:
Dog Show and Pet Classes - Entries on the day
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Novelty classes - enter on the day
- Junior Handling up to 16 years old
- Prettiest Bitch
- Most Handsome Dog
- Waggiest Tail
- Best SIX legs
- Fancy Dress.
FREE ENTRY ON THE DAY ONLY
Prizes are: 1st £4, 2nd £2, 3rd £1
Rosettes to sixth place Consolation prizes will be given
To be judged by the President
Bring along any pet to be judged on the day.
This section of the show has its own tent which is a very popular visitor attraction as well as providing a completive arena for local garden enthusiasts. our committee are open to suggestions and changes to our schedule. We would welcome new exhibitors to show their produce and share their skills with the general public.
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The closing date for entries is Saturday 1st August 2015.
Handicrafts and Produce Schedule
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**REMINDER TO ALL HANDICRAFT EXIBITORS THAT ENTRIES FOR THIS SECTION WILL CLOSE ON 1ST AUGUST 2016
Unfortunately we are no longer able to Goat classes that the show due to lack of entries - should 3 exhibitors wish to start them up again please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Terrier Racing in the Main Ring in the Afternoon (Time TBC) - Entries on the day
Classes & Parade of Cars, Bikes Steam engines,Tractors & farm Machinery give a glimpse of yester years.
Vintage Entry Form
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The show’s main aim is to promote and support wrestling in the area in conjunction with the local Academy based at Waberthwaite. The Academy is operational in the winter months and relies on Shows, Sports and galas for its summer competitions. The academy is open to all and goes to the local primary schools to recruit new members.The show has supported the junior side of wrestling by having just junior wrestling (Under 9,11,13,15 & 18 year of age). It is hoped to have weight categories (Under 7, 9 & 11 stone) this can be more competitive as the size of competitors are more even.
2019 - 12 stone championship - open to all
Entries on the day. Wrestling to start at 2 pm
Under 9 years: 1st £15, 2nd £10, 3rd £5.
Under 11 years: 1st £15, 2nd £10, 3rd £5.
Under 15 years: 1st £15, 2nd £10, 3rd £5.
Ladies Open: 1st £15, 2nd £10, 3rd £5.
Under 15 years: 1st £15, 2nd £10, 3rd £5.
Under 18 years: 1st £15, 2nd £10, 3rd £5.
7 STONE: 1st £15, 2nd £10, 3rd £5.
13 Stone: 1st £15, 2nd £10, 3rd £5.
All Weights: 1st £30, 2nd £20, 3rd £10.
Wrestling to start at 2 pm
PLEASE NOTE: CHANGES MAY BE MADE ON THE DAY DEPENDING ON TURNOUT
These traditional children’s sports take place in the main arena and are a highlight for all the competitors young and not so young. It is a thrill for the children, their parents and grandparents to watch their children excel and also recoup their show entry and more, as every entry is a winner from first to last.
The local history tent has been a feature of Gosforth Show since the year 2000 and with the exception of 2001, when the show could not go ahead because of the Foot and Mouth Disease epidemic, and has continued ever since.
Within this tent there is a huge display of local photos, some from the recent past but many more going much further back, in fact to the first show in 1876. It is wonderful to listen to the buzz that emanates from inside – with shouts of “that’s my Dad”, “Oh! I remember that day….” Or “where are you in that photo?” Show goers return again and again during the day to show their friends or family photos in the display. The display changes each year so there is always something new to see.
Also in the tent can be found other organisations whose interest is in local or family history and this changes from year to year as different groups come and go. In the past we have had Cumbria and Furness Family History Societies, Haig Mining Museum, The Beacon Museum, The Rum Story, Wasdale, Drigg, Lamplugh and Eskdale Local History Groups and many others.
HISTORY OF GOSFORTH AND DISTRICT AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY
In December 1875 a group of the principal farmers in the district met at the High , Gosforth to discuss the forming an Agricultural Society for the area. Mr John Tyson of Blennerhazel Farm, Gosforth who was elected the first Chairman of the Committee. He offered a field (now part of the Denton Park Housing Estate), in the centre of the village for use as a showfield and the show continued here until 1913 when it ceased for the duration of the first World War. Two further meetings followed when a committee was proposed and the boundary for the district was established. The Committee was made up of local farmers whose surnames include Tyson, Gunson, Benson, Grice, Mashiter, Braithwaite, Spedding, Wilson, Matterson, Cook, Parker, Plummer, Hartley, Mossop and Steele to name a few. Subscriptions were set at 10 shillings per member with free entry in all classes or 5 shillings per member with free entry to the ground and a charge of 1 shilling per head for each entry. A list was opened in the room and almost £40 subscribed. The second meeting, held on 20th January 1876 finalised the committee membership and announced the acceptance of the various offices: patron – Mr A B Steward of Newton Manor, president – Mr Stanley of Ponsonby Hall and vice president – Lord Muncaster MP of Muncaster Castle. The Chairman had received promises of nearly £80 in money as well as several special prizes.
THE FIRST GOSFORTH SHOW – FRIDAY 20TH SEPTEMBER 1876
The first exhibition of the Society was held on 20th September 1876. The weather, though uncertain in the morning cleared later in the day, did not deter the visitors who started arriving early in the morning from surrounding farms and villages as well as by train to nearby Seascale Station. Mr J Fearon’s handsome coach and team of four chestnuts brought many leading towns people from Whitehaven.
The show was held in two fields close to the Church, in the larger field the horse classes were housed and driving and leaping courses staked out. Spectators had a good view of events from the large grandstand which was erected half-way along the rails as well as the view afforded by natural high ground at one end of the field. This field also held the implement exhibits and the luncheon marquee. Round the walls of the second field were cattle, sheep and pig pens and in one corner the committee tent was erected.
The entries in all classes totalled 478 of which 128 were horses including agricultural, roadsters, hackneys and leapers. The remaining entries were for cattle, sheep and pigs. Long red Mangolds, Swede Turnips and Hybrids made up the root classes. A premium of 3 guineas was awarded to Messrs Head and Heron, Egremont for their display of implements. The only class where ladies dominated was for 3 pound of butter without print or mark and produced 15 entries from the area.
Two other competitions were judged prior to show day. “The Green Crop Competition” and “The Best Managed Farm”. The Right Hon. Lord Muncaster, MP, gave £5 for the best general green crop, not less than 3 acres to be shown and the Society gave £2 for second. The first prize went to William Sharpe, of Drigg Moorside and the 2nd to Mrs Gowan, of Byersteads. The Newton Manor Cup (value 10 guineas) was given by the patron of the Society A B Steward, Esq for the best managed farm in the parish of Gosforth, in the best general state of cultivation, neatest and most exact order as to fences, gates, drains, farmyards, cleanliness from weeds and in the most eligible succession of green and white crops. The winner was Mr William Benson of (Low) Boonwood.
The luncheon, held in a large marquee on the show ground and catering provided by Messrs Hincs and Taylor of Barrow in Furness, was well attended by most leading figures in the district. After many toast being proposed the assembled parties moved to the field to watch the driving and jumping contests and the conclusion.
The weather has always played a vital role in the success of the Show and many of the Show reports in the Whitehaven News refer to Gosforth Show being “favoured with faultless weather”. However, 1883 was an exception when gale force winds blew the Luncheon tent away on the eve of the Show. This did not deter the Committee and arrangements were made for the Luncheon to be held in the nearby school.
The Show has had few breaks during its 135 year history but the Show was not held for the duration of World War One and World War Two. The two fields adjacent to Gosforth Hall was the site of the show from 1876 until 1913 but on the revival of the show in 1919 a new showground was found at Harecroft Park on the opposite side of the road to Harecroft Hall. The final show on this field was a memorable one but not for the best of reasons being the day Germany invaded Poland - Friday 1st of September 1939. The Whitehaven News reported
“Spectators at Gosforth Show on Friday were calm but anxious. Few took any interest in the judging the majority standing in groups discussing the war news. Every new arrival was besieged with questions about the latest information about the outbreak of hostilities.
The gloom of the proceedings in the early part of the day was heightened by a steady dismal drizzle which persisted until after lunch. Brilliant weather in the afternoon did little to enliven the proceedings, and the number of arrivals diminished instead of increasing. Curtailed bus services, combined with the gravity of the situation resulted in an attendance much below the average and one that was less than 50 per cent of last years.”
A visitor to that show remembers “At 3 pm that afternoon Tommy Bragg, Livestock Remover from Egremont and two more lorry drivers were summoned over the loud speaker system, to set off at once, off the field for London, to collect supplies to bring back up North, as war was about to be declared on Sunday September 3rd.”
Another visitor remembered leaving the show with other girl guides to go to the railway station at Seascale to meet the evacuees who were billeted in the area.
This was to be the last show for the duration of the war. The Victory Show was held on Friday September 7th 1945 in Petton Farm Field (now used as a car park on show day) where it remained until removal to the current site.
The Show has been continually evolving; the Root Section which started as a few classes aimed at the local farming community featured Mangold Wortzel, Swede, Cabbages, Potatoes and Carrots displayed on the ground went on to be displayed within a large horticultural marquee and to this day attracts all types fruit, vegetables, plants and flowers.
Within a few years of the founding of local women’s institutes in the early 1920s an additional section of classes were added for WI members these included fine embroidery, canvas work, wool rugs, leatherwork and of course produce such as Cakes and preserves. The farmer’s wives, sisters and daughters still continued to exhibit their butter, bread and dressed poultry and in the early years of the show and during the first quarter of the 20th Century the prizes were substantial. In 1897 the Whitehaven News gave a Lady’s Silver Watch value £2 10s as a prize for the best three pounds of fresh butter. For a dozen Fresh Brown Eggs Mr Hinde, Jeweller of Whitehaven gave and Electro Plated Hot Water Jug value 15s for first prize and for second prize a Jam Stand value 7s 6d. In 1904 The Whitehaven News had upped its prize to a ladies gold keyless watch valued at £3 3s.
A Fur and Feather Tent was introduced in 1953 and is still a colourful and interesting feature. The History Tent first made its appearance in 2000 and has been popular ever since.
Foot and Mouth disease affected the Show in both 1951 and again twenty years later in 2001. In 1951 the cancellation of the show meant a loss of £500 to the Society and was a threat to its future. However, the majority of subscribers told the Committee to keep the subscriptions. Matt Singleton raised his to 10 guineas and gave a pig to raffle which brought in another £75. The Secretary Matt Mossop organised a dance which raised over £30. The result was that no loss was felt by the Society.
There have been some exciting attractions at Gosforth Show including amazing Kossack Horse Riders and more recently The Dancing Diggers.
This year we have the Wolf Stunt Display Team
Due to the huge support we have for the popular young handler classes in the sheep section, we have now split the ages into 3 groups - under 7 yrs, 7 to 10 yrs & 11 to 16 yrs. All entrants receive a prize.
Entry is free but we do need your entries in by the closing date so we know how many pens we need to erect for your sheep. Please use the entry forms provided.