Belfast Telegraph

Balmoral Show 2019: Farm showcase gives thousands a unique flavour of Northern Ireland

Crowds flock to sample very best of what local farming industry offers

Mark Bain

By Mark Bain

If you only take one thing away from a visit to the Balmoral Show, you can be sure it'll be a well-fed stomach.

Ireland's leading agri-food extravaganza looks set to attract more than 100,000 visitors again this year over four days of competition, cooking, music, shopping and fun.

But ask anyone what the highlight is, and most will tell you it's the wonderful flavours Northern Ireland can serve up.

The smells wafting from the food hall, with a mix of well-known names and some wonderful independent producers, entices you in and it's hard not to stop and sample.

If you make it past the food, you'll find plenty to keep the family entertained.

"Take my hand," you overhear a mum calling to her daughter.

"We're going to see the cows."

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Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019
Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Resting in the cattle shed. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Resting in the cattle shed. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Tori Veitch from Lisbellaw in Co. Fermanagh, who is celebrating her sixth birthday, prepare the family bullock ahead of today's showing. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
From left, Kim and Ian Montgomery with their daughter Emilia and their prize winning Bluefaced Leicester sheep. Pic by Peter Morrison
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Irish Dancers at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn.Trucking at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Young Famers girl's football at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Young Famers girl's football at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Young Famers girl's football at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Young Famers girl's football at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Young Famers girl's football at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Sheep showing at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Sheep showing at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Agnes Todd from Banbridge with her awarding winning pigs. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Sheep shearing at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. A cow and its one-hour-old calf which was born at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Norma Wilson with her Hampshire Down sheep at the Balmoral show. Pic by Peter Morrison
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Stunt Bike performance pictured during the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
Elizabeth Snodgrass and Billy Snodgrass take a rest with their cattle at the Balmoral Show. Pic by Peter Morrison
People look at Farm machinery equipped on display at the Balmoral Show. Pic by Peter Morrison
Thousands of People enjoy the warm weather as they attend the Balmoral Show. Pic by Peter Morrison
Children get up close to the sheep on display at the Balmoral Show. Pic by Peter Morrison
Sam Forbes with his Kerryhill Sheep at the Balmoral Show. Pic by Peter Morrison
David Whiteman and Sam Forbes, right, wait with their Kerryhill sheep at the Balmoral Show. Pic by Peter Morrison
Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Sheep pictured at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
A robot entertains people at the Balmoral Show. Pic by Peter Morrison
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Horse show jumping at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Horse showing at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. People arrive for the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Day two of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Mucking out in the cattle barn before the day begins at the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Second day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, are Ulster Bank's Dan McGinn(second from left) the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Karen Bradley(centre) and Head of Ulster Bank Richard Donnan(right) who meet Anita McCann at her Rossi's Ice Cream business stall. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Second day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, is Jenny Lowry with her Melting Pot Fudge business. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Second day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, are the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Karen Bradley(centre) and Head of Ulster Bank Richard Donnan(right) who meet Clare Gallagher - Membership Manger with Women in Business at her business stall. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Second day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, are Ulster Bank's Dan McGinn(second from right) the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Karen Bradley(centre) and Head of Ulster Bank Richard Donnan(right) who meet Clare Gallagher - Membership Manger with Women in Business at her business stall. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Karen Bradley and Head of Ulster Bank Richard Donnan at the Balmoral Show.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th May 2019 Second day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, is Anita McCann with her business Rossi's Ice Cream. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Getting the cattle ready before the day begins at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Sheep pictured with Fiona Cunningham at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Arianna (aged 4)and Cara Bell (aged 2) from comber pictured enjoying the machinery at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Sheep pictured at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Lucy Rodgers from Dromara with Brownie getting ready before the day begins at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Arianna (aged 4)and Cara Bell (aged 2) from comber pictured enjoying the machinery at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Stunt Bike performance pictured during the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Stunt Bike performance pictured during the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Warming up before compition startes at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Getting the cattle ready before the day begins at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 16/05/2019: Day two of the Balmoral Show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Sheep pictured at the show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press

Cue squeals of delight.

And that's what this show is all about.

Smiling faces, great chat, fun for everyone and, most importantly, a celebration of all that's good about where we live.

In the end, this place is famous for its farming and it's the sheer depth of those agricultural roots spreading across so many facets of our society that impresses - and it's all wrapped up by the Royal Ulster Agricultural Society in four great days.

Clearly the sunshine helps, shining down on the show rings as farmers compete for the coveted titles to boast about in years to come.

But it's a business, too.

Deals are done, hands are shaken, old friends met and new friends made. Farming is at the centre of it all.

Wesley Aston, chief executive of the Ulster Farmers' Union, said the whole day has given him a sense of optimism.

"The great weather makes everyone feel a bit better," he said.

"But overall, it's great to see the optimism of the farming community here today.

"A lot of the people involved in agriculture come here for a day out, to get away from the farm life, but you still can't get away from the overarching issues farms are facing.

"There's a European election around the corner and the big issues of Brexit and the lack of a Stormont government are dominating the conversations. That's only natural.

Pacemaker Press 15/5/19
Katie Millar with Gareth Elliott at The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days.
The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities.
Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 Katie Millar with Gareth Elliott at The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Stunt motorcycle rider performing at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Stunt motorcycle rider performing at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Stunt motorcycle rider performing at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye DUP Leader Arlene Foster stops for a selfie at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye DUP Diane Dodds at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 Animals os show on The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
15/5/19: Julie Anne Clyde with her bull Nijinsky from Crawford Brothers, winner of the Senior Bull Class at the Balmoral Show. Picture: Michael Cooper
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Show cattle are brought out for their competition at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 Animals os show on The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 Katie Millar with her prize cattle at the opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 15/5/19 The opening day of the Balmoral Show on Wednesday, Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend Ireland's largest agricultural and food show, over the next four days. The show is taking place at the former Balmoral Park just outside Lisburn and features a mix of farming displays as well as family activities. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Show cattle are brought out for their competition at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Show pigs are brought out for their competition at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Show pigs are brought out for their competition at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. The Sheep shearing competition takes place at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
15/5/19: Cattle judging at the Balmoral Show. Picture: Michael Cooper
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, is Jack Morton with his Jack's Fudge business. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, are(L-R) Andy Laverty, David Knowles and Jonny Laverty with their sweet potato crisps business Wolf and Woodsman. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, is Betty Rodgers with her creams and balms business A Blissful Blend. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye General views. of Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Sam Beattie aged 2 from Tullyveery, Killyleagh at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Cattle at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Cattle judging taking place at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Alpacas at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
15/5/19: Competitors enjoy a cup of tea during a break in the cattle judging at the Balmoral Show. Picture: Michael Cooper
15/5/19: Cattle judging at the Balmoral Show. Picture: Michael Cooper
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Lesley Shields with daughter Paislee aged 18 months from Kilkeel at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Cattle judging taking place at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, is (L-R) Leanne(13) and her mother Ann Marie Laverty from Mayobridge, Co. Down, with Thompson's Teas Jamie Thompson. The mother and daughter were getting their Ulster Bank Food Trail card stamped. Customers can visit different stands in the food hall getting their cards stamp which can be entered into a free draw. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, is Ulster Banks Catherine McMullan at the start of Ulster Bank's Food Trail . Customers can visit different stands in the food hall getting their cards stamp which can be entered into a free draw. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Pictured at Balmoral Park, outside Lisburn, is Tara Mullan with her Refuge Hot Chocolate business. Ulster Bank has provided space in its market at Balmoral Show to entrepreneurs from Ulster Bank's Entrepreneur Accelerator programme as well as small business customers. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
15/5/19: Kids enjoy sitting in a PSNI tractor at the Balmoral Show. Picture: Michael Cooper
Naomi Alexander, Hannah Alexander, Zara Gabbry and Lucy Gabbey with Dexter Cattle, Ballyboley Dexters from Graeyabbey Co Down showing at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019. Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
Ernest Gregg from Ballybollem Pedigree Livestock farm in Randalstown, Co. Antrim, pictured with his two-year-old bull Moore at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Briege Diamond Pointhouse Herd at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Jenna Hunter from Markethill enjoying the sunshine at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Billy Coote aged 3 from Dungannon at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Rosa Finnegan aged 2 from Co Louth at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Kieran Loughran aged 4 from Dungannon in the shovel of a CAT Wheel Loader , 18,849 kg, at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
Erin Cunningham aged 2 from Armagh at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019. Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank: Showing cattle takes place in the main area at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank: Showing cattle takes place in the main area at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank: Showing cattle takes place in the main area at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank: Showing cattle takes place in the main area at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Horse show jumping takes place at the start of the show. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 Gates open for the first day of the Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Lexie and Dorothy Johnston from Ballymacan Blondes Clogher Co Tyrone showing at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank. Ernest Gregg from Ballybollem Pedigree Livestock farm in Randalstown, Co. Antrim, pictured with his two-year-old bull Moore at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Andrew Davidson Gleno Valley YFCU receives his first prize in the Advanced Shearing competition from Zita McNaugher YFCU President at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
PressEye-Northern Ireland- 15th May 2019-Picture by Brian Little/PressEye Liam Kelly from Randalstown YFCU during the Advanced YFCU Final at Balmoral Park during the first day of the Balmoral Show 2019 Picture by Brian Little/PressEye
REPRO FREE. 15/5/19: Anthony Harbinson, Director of Safer Communities at the Department of Justice (left), visited the Balmoral Show to offer support and thank the many partner agencies who have joined forces to engage with the rural community to raise awareness of criminal activity and offer guidance on how to protect their property and report suspicious activity. He is pictured with Shelly Ann Grimes, PSNI Crime Prevention and (middle) Chief Superintendent Jonathan Roberts. Picture: Michael Cooper
REPRO FREE. 15/5/19: Anthony Harbinson, Director of Safer Communities at the Department of Justice, visited the Balmoral Show to offer support and thank the many partners who work with the DOJ on the Organised Crime Task Force (OCTF). The OCTF used the opportunity to highlight to the public the vulnerabilities exploited by Organised Crime Groups and provided advice and guidance on how to safeguard against crime and, importantly, to report crime. He is pictured with Detective Superintendent Rachel Shields Head of PSNI Organised Crime Task Force and (middle) Chief Superintendent Jonathan Roberts. Picture: Michael Cooper
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank: Sheep showing during the show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank: Sheep showing during the show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 15th May 2019 First day of the Balmoral Show, in partnership with Ulster Bank: Sheep showing during the show at Balmoral Park outside Lisburn. Picture by Jonathan Porter/PressEye

"We need a government to capitalise on that optimism we're experiencing.

"Farmers want help to move on, progress and improve.

"There are key decisions waiting to be made, but it's encouraging to see so many people out here with smiling faces despite the issues being faced by the industry.

Sheep at Balmoral
Sheep at Balmoral
Jenna Hunter from Markethill
Alpacas at Balmoral
The Balmoral Show
A horse gets cooled down
Thomas Hamill with Dandylion

"This is a day for families, and farming is essentially a family industry.

"It's the backbone of the country and in a year when Northern Ireland has been named World Food Destination, we don't want to miss the wonderful opportunities to capitalise on that.

"It's clear around the world that the Northern Ireland agri-food sector is a force to be reckoned with.

"Sometimes, living here, I don't think that is appreciated as much as it should be.

"We take farming for granted, the food we produce for granted.

"But you can see today just how special the produce of this country is.

"What we need now is the weight of a functioning government behind us so we can all grow, improve and create even more success."

Not that Brexit and politics is of concern to the younger visitors, who take great delight in sitting in tractors, dancing along to the music and simply sitting back and watching the showjumping.

Visit the Tesco Children's Farm where baby animals are waiting to be fed, marvel at the expertise of sheepdog trials or simply sit back with an ice-cream and take in the sights - it's all there.

Add into the mix performances from the Jason Smyth Adrenaline Tour Stunt Show, the Eikon Shopping Village, and, maybe, if you have a head for heights, an aerial view of the whole shebang from the top of the big wheel, and all the ingredients are there for the perfect family day out.

The show continues until Saturday, with gates open at 9.30am each day.

Belfast Telegraph

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