Couple joint president of Aylsham Show

For the first time in the 60-year history of the Aylsham Show, a husband and wife were elected as the joint presidents of the agricultural association.

For the first time in the 60-year history of the Aylsham Show, a husband and wife were elected as the joint presidents of the agricultural association.

Long-serving secretary Chris Self, who celebrates 30 years in post, and his wife Ann, with 16 years as assistant secretary, were elected as president of the Aylsham Agricultural Show Association.

They succeed North Norfolk farmer Billy Hammond, of Aldborough, near Cromer, who also presented cheques to more than 30 organisations, charities and good causes at the Aylsham Lodge Hotel on Wednesday.

Mr Self said he was delighted to serve in this special year for the Aylsham Show.

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"When the association celebrates its diamond jubilee and I've been secretary for 30 years, it is a very great honour.

"I'm especially pleased that our joint efforts as secretary and assistant secretary have been recognised.

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"The Aylsham Show is very special and is held in very high regard," said Mr Self, who is a partner of

an independent estate agent in the town.

He also paid tribute to the efforts of the 40-strong council and another 150 people who helped to stage the show.

The major change in the layout of the showground, which now enabled visitors to enjoy the attractive setting of Blickling Hall, had also been popular, added the retiring president.

Members also elected a new president-elect, who is a well-known arable and dairy farmer - Jonathan Deane, of Manor Farm, Ingham, near Stalham.

Mr Deane, who runs the farm's pedigree Ingham herd of Holsteins, has been a long-term supporter of the show and is a former representative of Norfolk Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs on the association's council.

Together with his wife Judy and family, they have been keen exhibitors in the cattle rings, which are such a strong feature of the one-day show.

David Hitcham, who presented the treasurer's report, said that the association had been fortunate to donate more than £110,000 to local organisations and good causes in the past five years.

He said that with the rising costs of staging a one-day show, it was becoming ever harder to generate a bigger surplus.

"The latest total of £26,500 is the second highest total that the association has been able to distribute," he added.

Retiring show president Mr Hammond presented cheques.

The largest single donation of £3500 was made to the East Anglian Air Ambulance, and Reepham Rotary received £2500 for two of its nominated charities, Prostate Cancer Awareness and Supporting Adult Literacy.

Aylsham Flower Club received £2000 for its two nominated charities, the Cleft Lip and Palate Association and Macmillan Cancer Relief.

Two cheques, each for £2000, were presented to representatives of the East Anglian Children's Hospices

and the Bryan Gunn Leukaemia Appeal.

The 60th Aylsham Show will be held in Blickling Park on August 28.

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