Ryedale Show returned for the first time since 2019 yesterday (Tuesday).

Grey skies and showers didn’t dampen spirits, with event goers flocking to the site in Welburn Park, near Kirkbymoorside, for the area’s biggest one day agricultural show.

The show brought a range of displays, including horses, livestock, fur and feathers, crafts, foods and many more.

Despite the two-year absence, the quality of displays at the show remained high.

Joint presidents Joe and Shirley Wildsmith were finally able to take up their roles this year after being appointed for the 2020 event.

The couple, aged 76 and 72, have been involved with the show for nearly 50 years and received Honorary Life Memberships at the 150th show in 2016.

Mr Wildsmith said: “It was a great honour to be chosen even though we had to wait a couple of years.

“It is good to see so many people at the show and we have seen a lot of people we haven’t seen for a long time.”

When Covid stopped proceedings in 2020 they assumed they might have missed their chance to be presidents after all.

Mr Wildsmith said they were both “gobsmacked for a day or two” when they were first invited to take on the roles.

Around 120 volunteers work together to make the show the success it is.

Show secretary Christine Thompson said it was good to be back.

Christine said the success of the show was down to the volunteers working behind the scenes.

“The team have really pulled together to get the show up and running again,” she added.

“It was disappointing to see the early forecast, but it doesn’t seem to have deterred people, I think they are just pleased to be out and about again.

“Everything seems to have gone smoothly and there had been a good crowd.”

Entries seemed to be down slightly across the board, but quality was up.

Fur and feather secretary said entrants had come from across the north of England.

“Entries are down but I think that is down to the two-year break and everyone is starting to get going again. For those that have entered, however, the standard has been very high.”

“Everyone is just pleased to be back at the show and see everyone again.”

Event goers Penny and David Dawson travelled to the show from York.

David said: “It is the first time we have been. It was excellent.”

He explained that the tractors were his favourite exhibit. Penny said she “liked the variety” on offer at the show.

Another attendee, Evonne Leedham, who stays near Pickering, said the show was a “good experience”. She regularly travels to shows and said: “It was nice to look around, there were some lovely stalls.”

Keeping the crowds fed and watered were the team from Fairweather Catering. Based in Butterwick, the company ran the show’s catering tent for the first time this year.

They also served lunch and afternoon tea for the presidents and their guests.

Owner Janet Fairweather said it had been an enjoyable day.

“We served 35 in the president tent and 435 at the main catering tent.”

Amongst the show stands were staff from Nunnington Hall, promoting activities at the National Trust property as well as encouraging people to volunteer.

RABI are a charity working to support anyone involved with farming in England and Wales who have fallen on hard times. The charity provides supports people struggling by providing the help they need, such as financial assistance and advice.

Examples include annual donations at Christmas and also school uniform grants for the children of those that have fallen on hard times.

David Burke has volunteered at the charity for the past 25 years.

Speaking to the Gazette and Herald at the Ryedale show, he explained that a large amount of support is currently being given to help with mental health.

David said: “RABI is for anyone who has been impacted in farming. In North Yorkshire we pay out more than any other county. At the moment the major area seems to be helping people with mental health problems.”

David said explained that mental health problems amongst farmers have been on the rise, given that those working on farms tend to now work alone or in small groups.

This is because new machinery has meant less labour is needed to operate farms.

He added that farmers have felt further strain since Covid and more recently with rising costs during the cost-of-living crisis.

In turn, David explained that these factors have resulted in an increase in mental distress amongst farmers.

“The future of farming is in the lap of the Gods,” he said.

“People are losing money for every litre they sell.”

More information about RABI can be found on the charity’s website: www.rabi.org.uk