Eye Show gets a new look

CELIA WIGG After almost 30 years at the Dragon Hill showground, the Eye Show is moving to a new site and changing its name.


After almost 30 years at the Dragon Hill showground, the Eye Show is moving to a new site and changing its name.

Its new venue at Thornham Park, on Lord Henniker's estate, is just a couple of miles from Eye. About 70 acres of mature parkland will accommodate an enlarged showground area, allowing the annual August Bank Holiday event to develop new themes.

The reintroduction of a large equestrian section is already planned, which will include showing, jumping and driving classes together with a host of other field and country sports such as fly fishing, gundog training and archery.

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This year's show will also include the best of the past, the expanded range of activities and entertainment prompting a change of name to the Eye Show and Country Fair.

Show director Tim Seeley said: "This move is an exciting opportunity for the show to develop new themes, introduce many new features and broaden our public appeal in the idyllic setting of Thornham Park.

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"Moving from our Dragon Hill show- ground is a great wrench, and we owe an enormous debt of gratitude for the tremendous support given to the show for nearly three decades by the landowners."

There have been problems with car parking at Dragon Hill in recent years, when wet conditions have turned it into a quagmire. The main car park field is scheduled for other agricultural use and is not available for this year anyway.

Other land may also be redeveloped for housing in the future.

Mr Seeley said the move to Thornham Park was by permission of the trustees of the Thornham Settlement Estate and would bring extra benefits.

"Being able to park cars on grassland next to the show area is a major improvement for our visitors," he said.

The site is midway between Ipswich and Norwich, and only a mile from the A140. More show details will be announced shortly, and information on trade stand sites is available by calling 01379 898816 or 870224.

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