Sunday dawned to grey autumn skies and drizzling rain unlike the warm and sunny weather of the Henley Show. Henley Show had been a busy day in September with good crowds and plenty of competition.
Henley show is one of the highlights of the year in the countryside where locals meet up to support each other and engage in healthy competition. There really is something for everyone and it is truly a family occasion. This year the cattle entries were down but there were plenty of sheep and lots of educational displays including a foraging demonstration put on in the main ring by the young farmers.
Dogs were plentiful enjoying the day with their owners and the dog and duck display was as popular as ever.
Today, however, was the turn of the Ploughmen at the annual Henley and District Agricultural Association Ploughing match. Contestants were operating machinery ranging from horse drawn ploughs to vintage tractors and some more modern equipment. The appalling weather had done nothing to soak the ground which was dry beneath the surface and made the job very difficult especially for the older machinery.
There were record numbers entered and despite the weather they arrived ready to show everyone how it is done without GPS and other modern gadgetry.
Their sheer determination was admirable especially as some had driven a considerable distance to get there. The volunteers working in the car park, bar and elsewhere were cold and wet but somehow managed to be welcoming and efficient. The whole event showed the British at their best – carrying on despite the inhospitable conditions and seeming to enjoy themselves!