The South of England Show returns for three days of countryside joy and family entertainment

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The South of England Show is returning for its 56th year, from Friday 7th to Sunday 9th June 2024. In addition HRH The Duchess of Edinburgh will be in attendance on the Friday

Organised by the South of England Agricultural Society, the beloved annual event invites visitors to immerse themselves in the charm and excitement of countryside rural industries and pursuits. It offers a delightful day out for families and individuals alike at the South of England Showground in Ardingly, West Sussex, between 9am and 6.30pm each day.

The show promises a diverse array of attractions, including agricultural and equestrian displays, live entertainment, rural crafts, horticulture, and an abundance of food, drink, and shopping experiences for all ages.

This year’s show features an exciting lineup of attractions, including the much-loved Atkinson Action Horses, renowned for their high-energy and breathtaking stunt shows led by the skilled Ben Atkinson. Attendees can also look forward to international showjumping, heavy horse displays, cookery workshops for kids, scurry-driving competitions, equine showing classes, and livestock competitions.

A new Countryside Ring will showcase falconry, axe skills, ferret displays, and search-and-rescue dog demonstrations. The ever-popular Casablanca Steps will provide musical entertainment, while a vintage agricultural machinery ring, a medieval re-enactment zone, a British Army village, and more will add to the excitement.

For children, a special trail around the showground offers fun, free experiences, including educational activities about food production and the chance to meet our local emergency services. The sheep show promises laughter for all ages, and the Discover the Countryside area provides engaging content such as fly casting, sheep shearing and wool spinning.

Further additions to this year’s lineup include the Woodland Craft Area, featuring demonstrations in ancient skills, such as trug, stick, hurdle and basket making, hedge laying, and chainsaw carving. You can even make your own corn dolly.

For gardening enthusiasts, in addition to the opportunity to explore the garden design competition entries and indulge in shopping opportunities from nurseries and plant and equipment specialists, there will be a new Wildflower Garden offering a tranquil retreat to wander and enjoy. The Bees & Honey Marquee will provide live bee demonstrations, observation hides, and a showcase of local products.

Numerous street food areas, pop-up bars, cafes, the Grape & Grain Walk with local vineyards and breweries, and the new Gin Alley with locally distilled gins provide an extensive selection of food and drink options. Shopping enthusiasts can explore a variety of stalls, including country clothing, jewellery, pet accessories, and independent boutiques, with a dedicated Made in Sussex area showcasing fantastic items from local producers.

Corrie Ince, Show Director for the South of England Agricultural Society, said:

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“The South of England Show is a chance for visitors to see, meet, and learn from the farmers, landowners and craftspeople of our rural communities. There is a fantastic array of countryside activities going on in our region.”

Corrie continued, “Visitors will also get a chance to find out more about local and independent traders and discover many items that you just won’t see on the high street or online. Overall, the show provides the chance to support the British countryside, our charity work as an agricultural society, and enjoy a fantastic day out with the whole family.”

Tickets for the South of England Show can be purchased at www.seas.org.uk and cost £23.40 for adults and £21.60 for senior citizens/students, inclusive of a 10% advance discount until 30th May 2024. Children under 16 can enter for free, with a suggested donation of £2 for children. Due to the number of people on site, restricted livestock areas, and potential hot weather, dogs are not recommended.

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