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World’s largest gathering of Shire horses comes to Nottinghamshire next year

The world’s largest gathering of Shire horses is set to take place in Nottinghamshire for the first time next year.

Organisers of the National Shire Horse Show have selected Newark Showground as the venue for the event in 2022.

It will be the first time that the show – which has been running almost continuously every year for more than 140 years – has been staged in Nottinghamshire.

In common with so many events, the 2020 and 2021 National Shire Horse Shows were cancelled due to COVID-19.

Photo by Carol Stevens For the Shire Horse Society scaled
Newark and Notts Show 2010
J & J Goodwin’s Capespan Shires

But the Shire Horse Society, which runs the event, is hoping it will be third time lucky when the show goes ahead during the weekend of 12thand 13th March 2022.

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The show, which is the flagship event of the Shire Horse Society, had been held indoors at Staffordshire Showground since 2016 but the organisers have decided to opt for an outdoor venue for next year to give the event the best chance of being able to go ahead.

It’s the perfect opportunity to see the gentle giants of the horse world in all their finery and to learn more about this magnificent breed which has played such an important role in Britain’s history.

Victoria Clayton, Shire Horse Society Secretary and Show Director, said: “2020 and 2021 have been difficult years. Looking to 2022, Newark Showground gives a wonderful outdoor platform that can accommodate all the elements of the National Shire Horse Show. It provides hard roads and tracks, undercover stabling and two wonderful rings in which to enjoy our fantastic breed.

“We are looking forward to welcoming lots of local spectators and horse lovers. We hope they will offer their support as our charity tries to recover from such a devastating time.”

The National Shire Horse Show is believed to be one of the oldest, almost continuous, horse shows in the world, having been held for the first time at the Royal Agricultural Hall in Islington, London, in 1878, when the charity was named the English Cart Horse Society. It has only been held at a handful of venues around the country including Peterborough, Allington near Grantham, and Staffordshire.

It usually attracts more than 200 horses which compete in a range of classes in hand, in harness and being ridden. A fascinating event for all the family, it also features trade stands and other stands, plus parades and displays.

Only a few decades ago, the breed was in danger of dying out. But it has experienced a resurgence in recent years, although it is still on the endangered breed list compiled by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust, with fewer than 300 pedigree Shire horse foals born in the UK every year.

The Shire Horse Society is the only charity dedicated to the protection, promotion and improvement of the Shire horse.

Tickets for the show are now on sale via

They are discounted if booked in advance and are priced at £10 in advance for adults (£12 on the gate). Child (5-13 years) tickets are £8 in advance (£10 on the gate), with children gaining free admission on Sunday 13th March when accompanied by an adult.

A family ticket on Saturday (two adults + two children) is £32.00 in advance (£40 on the gate). Admission for under fives is free. Car parking is £2, payable on the day.

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