COUNTY NEWS: Duchess of Cornwall to visit South of England Show

The Duchess of Cornwall will be visiting the South of England Show in Sussex, Clarence House has announced today (May 25).

Thursday, 25th May 2017, 10:00 am
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 5:44 am
The Duchess of Cornwall will be visiting the South of England Show in Ardingly, Clarence House has announced today (May 25). Picture: Jennifer Munson Photography

The South of England Agricultural Society said it is ‘looking forward’ to hosting the duchess on its opening day, which will mark its 50th year of supporting agriculture and the countryside, since it was established in 1967.

The annual show at the South of England Showground in Ardingly runs from June 8 until June 10.

Chairman of the society Charlie Burgoyne said: “We are honoured to welcome our president, the Duchess of Cornwall to our 50th South of England Show, which will showcase the best of British agriculture, horticulture, forestry, equestrianism, rural crafts and skills as well as delicious, local food and drink.

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall being shown equipment used during earthquake relief work. Picture: South of England Agricultural Society

“It’s an extremely special year for the society and we hope the duchess will enjoy some of the spectacular displays that will be featured across the showground.

“During her visit she will meet some of the farmers and their livestock, talk to local school children and students from the region’s land-based colleges, as well as officially unveil an exciting permanent record of the society’s achievements during the last 50 years.”

This will be the Duchess of Cornwall’s first official visit to the show and the 25th royal visit the society has hosted during the last 50 years.

Her Majesty The Queen has been patron to the charity since her first visit to the show in 1974.

The Duchess of Cornwall is committed to supporting local food producers and encouraging children to learn more about where food comes from and to eat healthily, said a South of England Agricultural Society spokesman.

“She grew up in the countryside in the village of Plumpton and at a young age learned to ride a pony by joining her local pony club,” added the spokesman.

“She continues to have an enduring affection for horses and ponies and has chosen the international animal welfare charity Brooke to be the society’s chosen charity for the year.

“Over 1,500 horses and ponies will also take part in the equestrian showcase that forms an enormous part of the three-day extravaganza, featuring dozens of classes from impressive heavy horse turnouts to the fast paced inter-hunt relay, spectacular show jumping to beautiful hackneys.”

The South of England Show has welcomed more than three and a half million visitors over the last decade.

Across the three days visitors can enjoy a unique introduction to agriculture and the British countryside as well as entertainment, music, crafts, shopping galore and one of the most impressive food halls in the South East featuring many delicious local and regional foods.

Gates open at 9am and close at 6.30pm.

Tickets for adults will cost £21, under 16s are free and senior citizens and students over 16 will cost £19.

There is also free parking and a regular bus shuttle service from Haywards Heath railway station to the showground.

To buy tickets click here.

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