The organisers of the National Shire Horse Show have selected an outdoor venue in Nottinghamshire for the event next year.
The 2021 National Shire Horse Show is being planned for Newark Showground and will take place over the weekend of 13th and 14th March.
It will be the first time that the show – which has been running almost continuously every year for more than 140 years – has been staged in Nottinghamshire.
In common with so many events, the 2020 National Shire Horse Show was cancelled due to COVID-19.
The show, which is the flagship event of the Shire Horse Society, had been held indoors at Staffordshire Showground since 2016 but the organisers have decided to opt for an outdoor venue for next year to give the event the best chance of being able to go ahead.
Victoria Clayton, Shire Horse Society Secretary and Show Director, said: “2020 has been a tortuous year and one we will be keen to forget. Looking to 2021, Newark Showground gives a wonderful outdoor platform that can accommodate all the elements of the National Shire Horse Show. It provides hard roads and tracks, undercover stabling and two wonderful rings in which to enjoy our fantastic breed.
“A move outdoors gives the most realistic chance to deliver a show in 2021, as we think it is unlikely that gatherings of our size at indoor venues will be permissible.
“It is very much hoped that our membership will understand and support the move and see that every effort is being made to produce the National Show. And we hope that the public of Nottinghamshire and its nearby counties will join us and offer their support as our charity tries to recover from such a devastating year.”
The National Shire Horse Show is believed to be one of the oldest, almost continuous, horse shows in the world, having been held for the first time at the Royal Agricultural Hall in Islington, London, in 1878, when the charity was named the English Cart Horse Society. It has only been held at a handful of venues around the country including Peterborough, Allington near Grantham, and Staffordshire.
It usually attracts more than 200 horses which compete in a range of classes in hand, in harness and being ridden. A fascinating event for all the family, it also features trade stands and other stands.
It’s the perfect opportunity to see the gentle giants of the horse world in all their finery and to learn more about this magnificent breed which has played such an important role in Britain’s history.
Only a few decades ago, the breed was in danger of dying out. But it has experienced a resurgence in recent years, although it is still on the endangered breed list compiled by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust, with fewer than 300 pedigree Shire horse foals born in the UK every year.
The Shire Horse Society is the only charity dedicated to the protection, promotion and improvement of the Shire horse.
Tickets will go on sale later this year.
For more information visit www.shire-horse.org.uk