December 5 2013 Latest news:
Monday, September 9, 2013
Thousands of countryside enthusiasts turned out for the Sandringham Game and Country Fair in the grounds of the royal estate.
The 15,000 or so visitors to the show at the Queen’s Norfolk retreat were treated to a variety of activities and attractions, including dog shows, owl shows, clay pigeon shooting and an array of craft stalls.
Television chef Mark Lloyd wowed food-lovers with his culinary expertise, whereas gun dog enthusiasts had all the fun of a day out shooting at the ‘walk up and shoot’ arena display, where props were used to simulate the experience.
Event organiser Mark Hume, from Living Country Shows, said the event was special because of its range of things to do, which made it an occasion for all the family.
“It depends which way you look at it,” he said. “There are people who come anyway, because they like coming to country shows, and there are the people who come because there is so much going on and it is such a good family day out.”
Visitors travelled from far and wide to attend the event, which ran between 10am and 6pm on both Saturday and Sunday.
Angela Clarke, 67, visited from Essex while she was holidaying in Norfolk. “I like the atmosphere,” she said. “It is very friendly and you feel a part of the countryside. It feels very traditional as well.
“I like to see the exhibitors, as well as the dog agility shows.”
Martin McNair, 56, travelled from Boston, in Lincolnshire. “I came last year for the first time and thought it was really good.
“I’m into shooting, but it’s also just a good, fairly local show, which means you don’t have to trail across the country. There is everything here that you would want, including good food and entertainment.”
Vernon Bell, 73, also visited from Essex. “I think it’s a terrific show. We came two years ago and it seems bigger this time than it was last time. There are more trade and craft stands, which is what a lot of people visiting want to see.”
Johnny Owen, 41, from King’s Lynn, said the Sandringham event was “certainly one of the better country shows”, adding: “It’s got a bit of everything.”
He also said it was good for people interested in countryside issues to mix with like-minded people – a view echoed by 49-year-old Tony Lee, from Narborough, who said: “It is nice to try and draw more people into the countryside and out of the town.”
Ken Twell, 59, from King’s Lynn, added: “It’s a good family day out. There is plenty for everyone. It is not as hot as last year – but last year was baking, so this is a bit more pleasant.”
Mr Hume had said before the event: “We would like it to be cooler. Sometimes it can be too hot and people either stay at home or flop on the grass!”
As well as the animal shows, the Mark Stannage International Stunt Team put on some daring displays including motorcycle stunts and high diving.
There were also children’s attractions, including bouncy castles and puppet shows, whereas the older generation could hark back to a bygone age in the yesteryear arena, with steam engines, old tractors and vintage motorbikes.
Dog enthusiasts could also bring their canines to the dog zone and later enjoy some refreshments in the food zone.