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Royal Highland Show 2012

Royal Highland Show 2012


Putting on a Brave Face


Scottish Field stand at the Royal Highland Show 2012

Sodden but smiling – The Scottish Field stand at the Royal Highland Show, courtesy Mark Duncan @ Scottish Field.


It’s not been an easy year for the organisers of outdoor events and the Royal Highland Show was no exception. The event staged over four days from 21st – 24th June coincided with torrential rain and flash flooding that brought trains to a stand still and widespread travel disruption.


Show Manager, David Dunsmuir said that the organisers had to deal with what he termed were ‘real challenges, particularly car parking,’ and as you can see from the picture below, taken by our own Karen Hume, who visited the show on Friday, he’s not wrong about those challenges. No matter how euphemistically he chooses to phrase it, that mud is of a quality and quantity usually restricted to a field.


Royal Highland Show 2012 Car Park

Knee deep mud in the RHS car park, captured by Karen Hume.


We’re quite used to seeing images of euphoric festival-goers wallowing in deep mud at Glastonbury and somehow we feel OK about this. They still seem to be having a good time and the legacy of brown sludge never does anything to deter anyone from having a good time.


However, an agricultural show has a slightly different standard of etiquette and it seemed unlikely that farming folk would take to wrestling and romping for the cameras in quite the same way.


Gillian Forsyth, Royal Highland SHow 2012

Dubarry wearer Gillian Forsyth perfecting the tricky art of looking elegant in knee deep mud, whilst also demonstrating the durability of her Dubarry boots.


After her day of tramping the show, Karen commented that


‘The walkways were often totally flooded and unless you were wearing wellies or a good old pair of Dubarry’s you were stuck. My Dubarry’s were a god send but are looking as pristine as ever again having had a good dry out and treatment of Dubarry cleaner and the Dubarry leather cream which is my favourite of all the products.’


In a year when the Royal Highland Show has received two separate awards for its performance, and praise for its £100 million contribution to the Scottish Economy expectations were high and the impact of the horrendous weather must have been a big disappointment.


Visitor numbers dropped from the high watermark of 180,000 in the previous year to around 160,000 and inevitably the impact will have been felt by exhibitors and traders – with of course, the exception of the umbrella and pac-a-mac stalls.


We can only hope that drier, more clement weather prevails for the Border Union Show on 27th and 28th July.