Get a moooove on and get your tickets now for the County Show! The Royal Isle of Wight County Show takes place on Sunday 30 August giving you the chance to meet all kinds of farm animals, including some prize winning Guernsey cows.
You can get up close to three of these beauties from the Island’s Briddlesford Lodge Herd. They’ll be there to meet the public and you can watch milking demonstrations at 11.30am, 1.30pm and 3.30pm.
Briddlesford’s 140 cows produce around a million litres of milk every year, which is made into bottled milk, cheese, butter and cream. Paul Griffin, the Partner and Owner of Briddlesford Lodge Farm, says that the milk is so fresh that “it could be in the cow in the morning, and you could be drinking it in the afternoon.”
James Cook, the Head Herdsman, has been pulling pints here for eight years. “The secret is to be quiet and calm, because if a cow’s stressed out, she won’t let you milk her”, he confided. “We usually play music which helps to relax them – they particularly like anything with violins in it.”
So how hard can it be to milk a cow? One of the County Show’s headline sponsors, Michael Coyle from Lawdit Solicitors, decided to find out. Although he’s more at home in a courtroom than a barn, he put his advocate’s wig to one side to tackle Cornflower the Cow. “It’s a bit daunting”, he admitted. “Call me old fashioned, but I usually go to the shops when I want some milk.” He found that the trick is to apply firm pressure to the udders… and stand back if the cow starts kicking!
Michael’s firm, Lawdit Solicitors, offers legal services to Islanders. He lives on the Island and has just taken on an Island trainee, Mark Reed. They are specialists in mainly intellectual property, but also offer general commercial services. “Intellectual property is quite a specialised area (trademarks and patents) and nobody else really does what we do on the Island,” he says.
Michael urges more businesses to get involved in the Show. There’s still an opportunity to sponsor the Pig Ring, which is a favourite with visitors. Or you could support the Show Theatre where experts will be giving talks on everything from roses to the ‘hero rats’ that can sniff out disease and landmines. There are also are a few tables left in the Food Pavilion, Island Arts Pavilion and Makers’ Market – and you can share stands with other businesses to keep costs down.
Graham Biss, Chairman of the Show, says: “This is a high profile event, and there are lots of ways to get your business in front of thousands of people at a low cost. You’ll be in good company as our partners include Lawdit Solicitors, Mole Valley and WightFibre. It’s also loads of fun and you’ll get to see the amazing Household Cavalry. So get in touch now to find out more!”
* Tickets are available online now for £11 for adults (or £12.50 on the gate) and it’s free for U16s with a paying adult.
Michael Coyle from Lawdit, one of the headline sponsors of the Royal Isle of Wight County Show (blue shirt); James Cook, Head Herdsman at Briddlesford Lodge Farm (in green apron); Paul Griffin, Partner and Owner of Briddlesford Lodge Farm (in beige top and jeans); Graham Biss, Chairman of the Royal Isle of Wight County Show (in white shirt). All photos were taken at Briddlesford Lodge Farm.