The Art of the Country Show

First class ferrets!

The Slaley Show in Northumberland is a very much a community agricultural show. Cancelled last year due to bad weather, it went ahead this year on a glorious summer day in August and was an outstanding success. It was so unexpectedly busy that the hog roast ran out of hog at 2 o’clock and the Golden Fleece Bar ran out of Devil’s Elbow Ale not long after that. The thing that attracted me the most was the promise of viewing both ferret and terrier racing (but NOT together) which is not something you can see every day. Ferrets are quite charming animals although they do have very sharp teeth and have a reputation for wearing a bit too much ‘Eau de ferret’ for some people’s taste. They are beautiful funny and affectionate. And boy can they run down a plastic pipe at speed!

Where’s my ferret?

There were prizes for best in each colour class. Ferret hues include Sandy, Polecat, Albino, Silver and Coloured. And of course best in show, is the top accolade for a first class ferret.

Piped Polecat

A fearsome ferret
Terrier line up

I was also very much looking forward to the Terrier racing. Every local family with a small dog of any description was keen to propel them into the small wooden dog traps and see them race in pursuit of a fake furry tail pulled along at speed on a piece of rope. There were a number of heats before the grand final. Some of the terriers got the idea pretty sharpish and were out of the stalls and across the field like lightening. Others went off at a tangent, unsure what it was they were meant to be chasing and some, like a rather dim Bedlington terrier just stood still in the middle of the field looking around in a confused manner. It was all a lot of laughs for everyone and a definite highlight as far as I was concerned. More scenes from the country show

Terrier Tornado