Families flocked to Ardenrun Showground in their thousands to enjoy the return of one of the oldest agricultural shows in the country.
With a record number of animals competing for ribbons this year, proving that livestock showing is indeed still alive and well in the South East, visitors enjoyed getting up close to the animals which included 300 cattle entries, along with 1,000 sheep, 200 pigs and 50 goats - making it the largest gathering of show stock in the South East this year.
A busy equestrian schedule including top international show jumping and Horse of the Year Show qualifiers, rural crafts, new and vintage tractors, steam engines, the Hogg Show, Mole Show, ferret displays and country sports were just some of the attractions on offer, along with fun dog shows, terrier racing, and live music all weekend from local bands. Thrill seekers welcomed Messham’s Wall of Death, Britain's oldest family bike stunt show, to our showground - along with a full funfair and e-chariot racing.
With 222 trade stands in attendance, showcasing the finest food and drink from the surrounding counties of Surrey, Sussex and Kent, including local bars from Oxted, Westerham, and the Titsey Estate, our traders recorded bumper sales – bucking the trend of many shows.
The Lord-Lieutenant of Surrey, Michael More-Molyneux was among the visitors this year. Taking a tour around the Showground with Show President John Downing and Show Chairman Louise Young, he chatted to competitors, farmers, growers and some of the 250 volunteers who give up their time to make our show what it is.
Particularly popular in the Main Ring was the Castleman's Gundogs Demonstration, the Vintage Tractor Display which was judged by our Show President John Downing, and the Supreme Ridden Horse Championship which for the second year in a row was won by Will Moreton, taking home the Brian Perring Memorial Trophy.
Elsewhere on the Showground in a thrilling spell of judging during the Grand Parade of Livestock on Monday, the accolade of CLM Overall Beef Champion was awarded to the magnificent Hereford bull, Spartan 1 Typhoon owned by SC & GL Hartwright of Abingdon, Oxfordshire. The Blockfield Perpetual Challenge Salver (sponsored by The Downing Partnership) was presented to Peter Prior & Designer Holsteins' Designer Crushabull Adrienne for Supreme Champion Dairy Female.
With the Show attracting national pig breed championships for the Oxford Sandy & Blacks and the Kunekunes, as well as doubling the amount of pigs this year from last year, competition was certainly tough. Dr P Timmins was named winner of the Supreme Pig Championship with her British Saddleback Pampered Silverwings 11, and our Supreme Sheep Champion was Sarah Shrubsall’s Welsh Badger Face Torddu shearling ewe. This was the first year for the Welsh Badger Face sheep breed enjoying their own section of classes at our show. In total there were 42 different breeds of sheep on display!
Showjumpers were quick to praise the good ground conditions for jumping, with our showground team having worked round the clock to prepare the rings for action. Laura Mantel took the first place ribbons in the presitigous 1.50m Area Trial showjumping class riding Laura Renwick's Arkuga.
Show Chairman, Louise Young was delighted with how the Show had gone in her final year as chair:
“Record entries made the 2022 Edenbridge and Oxted Agricultural Show a resounding success, and we are so grateful for the support of farmers and smallholders who have made such considerable effort to exhibit with us. It’s a huge investment to prepare livestock for the ring and we really do appreciate the effort that our farmers make.
I’m very proud that as a team we were able to build on the show’s already great reputation and success, with new ideas and competitions - it makes for a very impressive display for our visitors and helps ensure that we retain our credibility with farmers as a show that stands by its traditional values.”