A top day out as Bath and West Show celebrates 150th year
The crinolines and top hats would turn heads today but otherwise this glorious photograph of farming folk enjoying a sunny day at the Bath and West Show back in 1863 would strike a chord with the millions who have poured through its gates since.
And now to celebrate the 150th show its founder, the Royal Bath and West of England Society, wants to hear visitors’ memories of the famous farming festival.
The show has had a permanent showground, near Shepton Mallet, since 1965, but for more than 100 years it toured the country. The archive photograph reproduced here was shot when the show was held in Exeter.
Show manager Alan Lyons said: “In 1896 when the show was held in St Albans, a commentator wrote about the society and its members in the programme and this unknown person’s words sum up what the show and society is about.
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"It said: ‘Whenever a farmer throughout the English speaking world today reaches the haven of success, some measure of that success, be it small or great, can be directly traced to the incomparable work of the Bath and West of England Society during the 119 years it has existed for the benefit of mankind.’
“Just as there was in 1852, 2013’s show will provide plenty to see and do for all generations.”
This year’s show will run from May 29-June 1.
The picture above from 1863 provides a reminder of the perennial appeal of the Bath and West Show. If you have memories of past shows email Julie.email@example.com.
Keep up to date on Facebook and on Twitter @bathandwest – with a countdown to May 29 and a daily fact from its fascinating history.
Tickets can be bought online at www.bathandwest.com with early-bird prices being £17 for an adult ticket, £3 for a child or a family of two adults and up to three children £40. The early bird tickets are available until March 31. On the gate prices are £22 adult, £7 child and £55 family.