A host of regional UK shows were forced to cancel or shorten their events after torrential rain and poor weather conditions dominated the weekend.
The three-day Beale Park Boat Show in Lower Basildon in Berkshire (pictured) was unable to open as planned on Friday 8 June due to high winds and torrential rain, but managed to pull together in time to welcome visitors on Saturday 9 June. The show was opened by environment minister and Newbury MP Richard Benyon, and park director Nick Bailey.
While almost all activities went ahead as scheduled, the classic car display had to be cancelled due to ground conditions.
“It was a tremendous effort and a real show of camaraderie which enabled us to open the show,” event organiser Gillie Jackson said. “Staff and exhibitors worked side by side, filing large puddles, covering sodden, muddy walkways and securing fixtures and fittings to ensure that the site was a safe and welcoming environment for visitors.”
Beale Park Boat Show estimated 5,000 visitors attended during its restricted two-day edition, which included themed features linked to the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
The Wales-based Aberystwyth and Ceredigion County Show on 9 June wasn’t so lucky and was forced to cancel entirely due to the inclement weather.
The organiser of the one-day Honley Show in West Yorkshire reached the same decision just hours before the event was due to open in Kirklees on 9 June because of the poor ground conditions. The Bradford Mela Asian cultural festival suffered a similar fate after Bradford Council said it could take years for the Peel Park site to recover should the event go ahead as planned on 9 June.
“Council officers deemed the huge infrastructure of the Mela, which consists of stages, marquees, fairground rides and temporary buildings, could be compromised by the soft and shifting ground in Peel Park,” the organiser stated on its website. “Inspections revealed pools of standing water in key areas, including the car park.
“There were also concerns that attempts to use the park would severely damage the ground, including community football pitches, and would take several seasons of work to repair.”
Further down the country, the Suffolk Show was affected by gale force winds and rain and was compelled to cancel its second day on 8 June. The Suffolk Agricultural Association is now offering refunds to visitors who purchased tickets.
The Suffolk Show was held at Trinity Park and typically attracts 90,000 visitors each year. The agricultural association is now expecting to underwrite the show by £500,000, up from its usual £100,000. The organiser said the event costs £1.4m to stage.
A week earlier, the Cambridgeshire County Show was cancelled on 3 June after the site became waterlogged.
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