Belfast Telegraph

Balmoral Show a day out to enjoy for show-goers of all ages

By Linda Stewart

Some people go for the Cattle Parade, others love the showjumping. But judging by the comments of the visitors to the Balmoral Show, the machinery is a huge hit.

The organisers looked to have called it right by moving the popular plant machinery, expanding it to allow for an extra 2,000 sqm of space. The plant machinery section has grown into a small city of soaring cherrypickers, gigantic tractors and vast concrete products.

It was one of the things that attracted John and Marion Graham from Carrickfergus, who described the Balmoral Show as a great day out. "I like looking round the machinery," John explained.

Connor Durnin (31), from Cullyhanna, Co Armagh, grew up spending a lot of time on his grandfather's farm. He was keen to introduce two-year-old son Darragh to the delights of farming.

"I just came to take him to show him the animals," he said. "It's good to get here to show him the animals, see the machinery and teach him about the industry."

Sinead White (36), from near Newry, was making the acquaintance of the goats in the Children's Farm with her daughters Alice (5) and Olivia (1). "The kids love it because of the lovely animals - they have animals on the brain," she said. "It's a great fun day out."

Meanwhile, the Marshall and Rodgers families from Belfast were enjoying their first experience of the Balmoral Show.

"This is our first time at the show. The daughter tortured me to come," explained Glenda Marshall (33). "You hear good things about it - it's for the kids really. It's brilliant, really good. They love the animals in the children's farm."

It was the second visit for Andrea Lloyd (34) and her son Freddie (17 months), who were exploring the Horticulture Village.

"We came last year when he was just a small baby, and that was the first time," she said. "Freddie likes the tractors and I like the food."

But Ellie Fitzsimons (12) from Crossgar, Co Down, was more drawn to the shopping village in the Eikon Centre. "It's a nice place to go. We come here every year," she said. "There are lots of different things about. I like all the wee stalls - each one is different."

Ruairi McCloskey (36) from Dungiven, Co Londonderry, was looking at the tractors with his son Cahir (10). "I like the livestock and the machinery. He likes the stunt riders," he said.

It was the first visit for Trevor Middleton (54) from Londonderry, who was there with Trisha Tweedie (51), from Lisburn. Trisha said: "Years and years ago I would have been at it when it was at the King's Hall, but this is the first time here."

Belfast Telegraph

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