The Lincolnshire Show 100 years ago vs now

8 June 2018, General news

This year, the 134th Lincolnshire Show will be celebrating and commemorating the end of World War 1 and RAF100. Visitors will be able to spot the theme throughout the Show with performances, displays and exciting activities all linked to the theme of RAF100.

With this in mind, we’ve been having a look at how different the Lincolnshire Show was 100 years ago compared to the current day.

The Lincolnshire Agricultural Society’s rich history first began in 1869.  After the first show was held on the Cowpaddle in Lincoln in 1869, the next nine shows were held on the West Common, finally taking up residence on what we now know as the Lincolnshire Showground. Before the show settled on the Showground, it travelled to towns throughout Lincolnshire including Grimsby, Grantham, Boston, Louth and Spalding.

The Lincolnshire Show has been running for over 100 years and only stopped from 1915 – 1919 because of World War 1 and because of the spread of Foot and Mouth in 2001.

In the last show before World War 1, in 1914:

  • The show was held in Boston
  • Visitors paid 2 shillings each to get in
  • The show ran from 15th – 17th July
  • 27,370 people came through the gates
  • There was 193 trade stands
  • 117 cattle, 87 sheep, 154 pigs and 422 horses competed for prizes ranging from £10 for first prize to £2 for third prize.

The next Show held after the war was in 1920 in Grimsby with a record attendance of 40,719.

In 1920:

  • Visitors paid 4 shillings to get in
  • 136 trade stands attended and competitors in equine and livestock classes included 105 cattle, 79 sheep, 66 pigs and 289 horses
  • Visitors could enjoy the butter making competition, judging of eggs, fruit bottling and soft cheese demonstrations and various parades of livestock
  • The local press hailed the 1920 show as a ‘successful revival’ and illustrated the ‘great advances in agricultural machinery since the outbreak of the war’.

In 1958 the LAS purchased 165 acres of land at a cost of £35,000, to hold the 76th Show in 1959. After much debate the site was deemed a perfect location with ample space for stands, a Members enclosure and stock entrances, warranting the entrance price to double to 10 shillings.

As one of the top county shows in the Country, the Show has developed over the years into a true celebration of rural Lincolnshire, with a mix of breath-taking entertainment, food, shopping, music, horticulture and farm life – creating the perfect family day.

In 2017:

  • The Lincolnshire Show was held on 21st and 22nd June
  • Advanced tickets were priced at £19 for adults, £6 for children, £16 for young persons and under 5’s went free
  • The event attracted 60,000 visitors
  • Visitors could explore 600 trade stands, with visitors spending on average £71 each
  • The new Aviation Zone, launched in 2016, was made bigger and better
  • 6,000 school children visited the Show
  • There were 1,300 entries into Equine classes, more than 530 sheep and over 200 cows over the two days

The Lincolnshire Agricultural Society celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019, so keep an eye out for announcements next year on how we’ll be celebrating at the 135th Lincolnshire Show!