Back when I worked in a big corporation in London and mentioned to colleagues my weekend plans involved looking at animals in all shapes and forms, all I got were confused looks. Country shows are not what those in the City tend to do in their spare time. Now, living in West Country, no one questions the fact most of my weekends involve wellies on my feet and ‘no signal’ on my phone.
The Frome Agricultural and Cheese Show was one of those adventures.
Although cheese was the main theme, my priority was all things fluffy, weird and wonderful. I grew up in the countryside so I’ve seen plenty of cattle but this was something else: from pretty, curly-haired cows to weirdly hench bulls, beautiful birds of prey and feisty pigmy goats.
To my surprise, the show featured a lot of chickens. The poultry tent was loud and smelly, and I wasn’t particularly crazy about it until I discovered this guy:
A pretty extravagant and posh pet if you ask me.
There were heart-melting beagles, sleazy lizards and snakes, Christmassy moose, newborn chicks and guinea pigs. One of the main shows involved horse riding with obstacles, which was extremely impressive. Watching the way they worked with people was fascinating; a definition of mutual trust.
Apart from animals, there were mad freestyle motorbikers, naughty amounts of food stalls, a robot singing Robbie Williams’s tunes, car and tractor exhibitions, and whatever other countryside thing you can think of. It did take half a day just to see everything.
And last but not least, there was the cheese.
As you can expect, the smell in the cheese tent was pungent, in the best possible way. The central part of the marquee was taken up by tables laden with ridiculous in size wheels and blocks of cheese. Five tasty purchases later and a quick stop to grab a healthy jar of spicy chutney and my weekend was sorted. It’s all about the simple and smelly things, eh.