The Border Shepherds' Show at Alwinton is the last agricultural show of the year round these parts. It is also, in my opinion, the best by far. The organisers work hard every year to put together a show that is full of stuff to see and do and which still consists mostly of locals displaying their wares, showing their sheep or taking part in rural pastimes which have somehow managed to escape the over zealous interfering of the county health and safety officials. Most other shows have succumbed to consisting mostly of market stalls selling dodgy sweat-shop clothes that you can buy in any market square in England any week of the year. Most other shows do not have terrier racing which is the highlight of the day and I am sure it is what draws in the big crowds which this show always attracts.

A shepherds' show would not be a shepherds' show without a sheepdog trial

Across the field the show
Behind the show the church

Big vegetables

Handcrafted walking sticks and crooks

Big leeks and big carrots (they must be straight)

Bloomin' good!

Beagles loving the attention

All the fun of the fair

The final of the wresting
(the winner is the first man to throw his opponent on the floor two times)

The big guy in blue won

Terrier racing - out of the traps!



  1. [I may have mentioned this before] At my alma mater, UC Davis, on Picnic Day (Saturday, mid-April) they have the Dachshund Derby: I think that’s analogous to your terrier racing (in addition to the sheepdog trials).

    Aw, beagles . . . but then do they become “The Unspeakable in Pursuit of the Unedible” [inasmuch as the beagles might like it, it would be my druthers to tell them a firm “No!” Leave your fox cousins alone…]

    • Don’t worry, JCF. You can coo to your heart’s content. We’ve banned hunting with hounds in England. Nowadays they follow scent trails and look pretty at agricultural shows.

    • As I type this, I have a half-beagle [Puggle] following scent trail up my body, to the land of “Lick JCF wherever there’s bare skin to lick” [I mean my arms and legs, pervs!]

      Coco, down—or I’ll feed ya to the foxes…