'I went to the Nottinghamshire County Show - I couldn't believe how big it was'

General view of the County Show
General view of the County Show -Credit:Laycie Beck

Over the weekend, almost 1,000 competitors and 200 traders gathered for the annual Nottinghamshire County Show which celebrated the agricultural and countryside communities across the county. From local food producers and craft stalls to have a go activities and livestock, there was so much to see at the show on Saturday, May 11.

I've not gone to the show in recent years if at all, so was surprised it was all happening on one day at first rather than over a weekend, but apparently this is the new format since the pandemic. However, despite how busy it was, with thousands and thousands of visitors at the Newark Showground, the day was brilliantly organised and it was the ultimate day out.

Although queueing at the A46 showground roundabout was a little tedious we soon made our way down the A46 and onto the A17 before entering the showground and being directed to the back end of one of the large fields. We arrived for around 9am when the gates opened, but even when we left around lunchtime there were still people arriving and everywhere you looked was just a sea of cars - I'm glad we roughly remembered where we parked.

The Nottinghamshire County Show is the ultimate day out for families
The Nottinghamshire County Show is the ultimate day out for families

Once inside, which again was only after a couple of minutes queung (if that), I was shocked at just how much was going on. After around an hour and half of generally having a look around and a wander, stopping at some stalls and watching the horses in the main arena, I was shocked two more times to come across even more things that I hadn't seen yet.

Even though there was so much going on and it was so busy, it didn't feel crowded and it definitely wasn't elbow to elbow as the organisers really had utilised the entire showground, which despite me visiting several times before over the years was still way bigger than I thought it was. It was great to see the emergency services out, loads of vintage tractors as well as some big brand retailers for agricultural machinery and some smaller independent businesses.

White Post Farm had a small area at the show and brought some of their adorable farm animals with them. There was also a stall for The Crusty Pie Company which I didn't get chance to go to, but it had some incredible pies and desserts which were all gigantic, even the samosas were the size of a child's head and the brownies probably the size of a grown man's hand.

I couldn't leave without getting some new dog treats from the TFM Country store in Whisby, but I was pleased to find the shop was also selling cans of fizzy drinks for 90p, which was way cheaper than most of the other stalls I had seen where they were at least £2 each.

The Crusty Pie Company had loads of amazing products for sale, and everything was gigantic
The Crusty Pie Company had loads of amazing products for sale, and everything was gigantic

My favourite Newark-based sweet shop, Simply Sweet, was also at the event so I bought a gigantic bag of sweets from them for £10. I was beyond chuffed as it had all the red flavour sweets in like strawberries, hearts, liquorice and some of the more unusual ones you don't see often, but the bag was so big I wish I waited until later to buy it as it felt like I was carrying a small child around with me the rest of the day.

After watching some of the livestock compete, such as the cows and pigs and even some rabbits, I was a bit disappointed not to have spotted the Highland Cows at this year's show, but there is a good chance I was just looking in the wrong place as it was bewildering how many things were happening at the same time.

In addition to all of the outside space, each of the showground buildings were also being used on the day for various things like stalls and competitions. The weather was glorious sunshine all morning, and it was lovely to meet some of the falcons and hawks that would be performing in the afternoon, and there were also some craft tents where you could see people doing woodwork or upholstery which was really interesting.

On the way out, my fiance and I also came across the Bedworth Air Rifle Club tent, and for £4.50 we were able to have 12 pellets each. This quickly turned into a fierce competition with the members watching as we carefully shot our targets desperate to beat each other, and I'm rather pleased to have scored several nines out of ten, giving me an overall score of 82.

Every part of the day was just wonderful and I wish we could have stayed for longer, as it's the sort of event you could easily take the whole family and a picnic and spend hours upon hours there. Normally I try and avoid the show due to all of the traffic it causes, but it wasn't as bad as I was expecting this year, and I'm looking forward to going again next year.

General view of some of the horses competing
General view of some of the horses competing