Love in the Air at the Great Yorkshire Show

 In 2021

Thousands of spectators cheered a heart-warming moment in the Main Ring of the Great Yorkshire Show when Ben Atkinson proposed to his girlfriend Georgie Jackson. The young couple from near Goole in East Yorkshire, who are both stunt riders with star act Atkinson Action Horses, agreed to tie the knot in front of a delighted crowd.

The touching moment came on a day two of the Show which also saw a visit from the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. George Eustice MP saw livestock competitors in action and met representatives from rural organisations. Welcomed by Show Director Charles Mills, he watched classes in the cattle and sheep rings, before visiting the NFU and the CLA stands.

The prestigious dairy cattle classes at the show culminated with the Blythewood Pairs in the Main Ring, with the title going to James Lawrie and Bill Lindsay, both from Scotland, with Ayrshire pair Helltower Modern Marcie and Harperfield Queen Elizabeth II. James, who was at the Great Yorkshire for the first time, said: “It is a tremendous show, one of the best I’ve ever been an exhibitor at!” The Collins family from Dewsbury repeated their previous day’s success in Supreme Dairy by taking the Reserve.

There was first-time triumph for showjumper Lisa Jones from Doncaster who took the honours in the International Stairway riding Diana P. Lisa, an amateur rider, beat some of best names in British showjumping to take the win.

The Supreme Sheep title went to Michael Alford of Devon’s British Charollais shearling, Foxhill Vermin.

An award for outstanding contribution to the farming and rural community in Yorkshire was presented to former Show Director Bill Cowling. The lifetime achievement award was created jointly by the Yorkshire Agricultural Society and the Royal Agriculture Benevolent Institution to acknowledge those who have given years of service to farming and rural life.

There were also awards for long service to people who have dedicated their working lives to farming in the region and to students from land-based colleges and universities across the region.

Initiatives to improve safety have including extending the show to four days for the first time. Opening hours have also changed so the Show will now running from 8.00am to 6.00pm Tuesday 13 July to Friday 16 July. This will allow visitors to arrive and leave in a more staggered way to help avoid queues.

Capacity has been limited to a maximum of 26,000 people a day to minimise any potential crowding and to ensure social distancing can be maintained at all times throughout the site.

This will mean that the Show will welcome a total of 104,000 people in total over the already extended four days, instead of the usual 135,000 visitors over three days.

Visitors are strongly encouraged to have a Lateral Flow Device test before they come to the Show as part of the “Test before you Travel” campaign.

Anyone who is isolating or exhibiting any Covid symptoms is asked not to attend and to visit the NHS site for further advice.

Visitors are also requested to download the NHS app before arriving in order to be able to scan QR codes where necessary, such as hospitality areas.

Those working at the Show, including catering and trade stands, have been required to have a negative lateral flow test within 24 hours before arriving at the Showground. To help reduce the risk for all those on site.

Tickets for the Show are this year in advance only and visitors are asked to print out e-tickets to help with social distancing at the gates. People will not be able to enter the Show without a ticket – they will not be available on the Gates.

New Covid-safe measures implemented this year include:

  • Holding the show over four days, rather than three: Tuesday 13 to Friday 16 July
  • Advance tickets only and capping total capacity to 26,000 a day
  • Changing the opening hours to 8am to 6pm
  • Adapting the Show to use as much outdoor space as possible
  • Multiple sanitiser points and changing layouts to avoid pinch points
  • Track and Trace will be at the hospitality points
  • Reducing the Grandstand capacity to 25% – 30% with tickets purchased in advance
  • Extra security to disperse any crowding
  • One way system around the Food Hall
  • Hall 2 closed to public although the entrance will be a celebrity meet & greet
  • Face coverings to be worn in all indoor areas, including toilets and the Grandstand, and encouraged when in queues
  • Enhanced cleaning
  • Table service only at bar areas

Sections that will not feature in this year’s show include the Fashion Show, the WI Stand, the pole climbing competition and the Cookery Theatre in the Food Hall although the Game Cookery Theatre will go ahead as usual.

Last year’s Show was cancelled due to Coronavirus restrictions. Instead, it went virtual over three days last July, attracting viewers from more than 40 different countries.

The 162nd Great Yorkshire Show takes place from Tuesday 13 to Friday 16 July, 8am-6pm.



  • The Great Yorkshire Show is England’s premier agricultural event, organised by the Yorkshire Agricultural Society (YAS), a registered charity supporting rural Yorkshire.
  • YAS supports and promotes the farming industry through health care, business, education and scientific research.
  • The Society is supported by its family of businesses including Fodder, Yorkshire Event Centre, Pavilions of Harrogate and the Harrogate Caravan Park as well as events Great Yorkshire Show, Countryside Live and Springtime Live.
  • Businesses and events held at the Great Yorkshire Showground in 2019 contributed £73.7 million to the economy.


Jo Francisco
PR Manager
Direct Line: 01423 546215 | Mobile: 07954 007414

Sara Lamper
Great Yorkshire Show Press Officer
Mobile: 07759 795990

Ben Atkinson proposes to Georgie Jackson in the Main Ring at the Great Yorkshire Show.

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