TENS of thousands of visitors were not deterred by the rain as the first day of the Great Yorkshire Show kicked off in spectacular fashion.

People from across the country turned out for what organisers had promised would be one of the best shows in its history.

The Harrogate showground opened its doors on Tuesday morning as thousands spilled in from several entrances throughout the day.

More than 12,000 exhibitors had been on site for the last few days preparing livestock.

Show exhibitor and school teacher, Kerry-Leigh Wilson, said it was her first time showing her Irish Draught horse - Silver Maddison.

The Northern Echo:

Preparing Silver Maddison, also known as Sonny, for participation in the youngstock class, she said: “We’re just waiting for our class, but we’re running a little bit late because of the record entries this year.”

This year, the number of exhibitors was at an all time high with 12,913 entering across 21 categories. The last time the record was set, was in 2014, when organisers received 12,847 entries.

Ms Wilson said: “I’m a school teacher, so I’m not allowed time off but my boss has given me time this year to come and compete him as its his last year as youngstock, and I didn’t want him to miss the opportunity. We definitely want to come again, it’s great – the best show I’ve ever been to.”

Despite the cancellation of all pig classes, due to safety concerns, all other classes including beef and dairy continued and the supreme beef cattle championship was held in the afternoon.

Show judges assessed Tuesday’s offering of cattle based on several physical factors, including muscle structure, composition of shoulders, udders and how they stood.

The Northern Echo:

For the first time in Great Yorkshire Show history, a camera crew followed television personalities Anita Rani, Julian Norton and Peter Wright, as part of a short series airing on Channel 5 on Wednesday and Thursday.

Despite the rain, stall holders said the number of visitors had not appeared to have fallen.

Stall holder and regional sales manager at Pieroth Wines, Melanie Atkins, said: “It’s been a very busy first day, which is fantastic despite little showers here and there, which has been amazing. It hasn’t stopped the lovely people of Yorkshire and beyond, travelling from all over the country.

"It’s one of our most important events in the UK.”

The Northern Echo:

TV vet Peter Wright who took part in the fashion catwalk Picture: KATE MALLANDER

In a ‘new look’ celebrity fashion catwalk, Yorkshire-born cricketing star Ryan Sidebottom, the Yorkshire Vet Peter Wright, the Red Shepherdess Hannah Jackson and five-time gold medal winner Hannah Cockroft, joined for a dazzling performance, hosted by ITV newsreader Christine Talbot.

Show director Charles Mills told The Northern Echo: "It's gone extremely well, we're delighted with the footfall. The weather has been pretty kind to us so that's in our favour.

"It's Yorkshire, the rain certainly hasn't dampened any spirits, when it's rained it's been very gentle on us and the ground is in very good condition.

"Every year we try to improve it, the simple fact is each year it's slightly better."

  • The Great Yorkshire Show continues today and on Thursday