The Gillingham & Shaftesbury Show is one of the largest one day agricultural shows in the south, held on our own Turnpike Showground in North Dorset. This traditional show is always held on a Wednesday in August and regularly has an attendance of over 24,000 people. The 2019 Show looks all set to be one of the best events ever, with a record number of trade exhibitors, a great range of attractions for all the family and entries for the competitive classes being received at a record rate.

With over 520 trade stand exhibitors there is an enormous choice available to visitors from the cradle to the grave, from schools & further education to fitness and medical advice, home improvement to cars, trucks & 4×4’s, handicrafts & gifts to food glorious food to eat in or take home, plus of course over 100 stands of tractors, machinery and farming suppliers. The competitive sections include cattle, sheep, horses, dogs, poultry, rabbits, homecrafts, handicrafts, art and a huge range of classes for younger exhibitors, all of which need to be entered in advance.

Agriculture, farming and rural activities are at the very heart of our show and visitors will be able to watch the finest cattle & sheep being paraded and judged. In 2018 there was in excess of £10 million pounds worth of agricultural tractor & machinery displayed on dealers stands. Our new Education Area – Farm, Food & Fun, will help to show how milk, meat and grain are produced on local farms and how it eventually reaches your table, there will be lots of hands-on activities for all ages. In the Harts of Stur Food Hall there are over sixty producers of the finest quality food and drink, including a gluten-free bakery specialist, local wines and cheeses, speciality Greek food providers, hot pies to be nibbled beer to be drunk along with a huge range of ready to eat foods.

Back to the Show by popular request will be the ‘Scare Crow Trail’ we are asking trade exhibitors to make up a scarecrow that in some ways represents or promotes their business. We hope that our visitors will purchase a judging form (all funds to the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution) and select the best crows. We will then present prizes to the winning exhibitors and draw three of the forms out to award prizes to the lucky visitors who voted.

There is a full day of entertainment and displays in three rings, the east ring will have a full day of horse showing classes and show jumping classes. In the Turnpike Ring, countryside sports include ferret and terrier racing, birds of prey, sheep dogs and the dog & duck display a packed programme of exciting entertainment.


gillingham and shaftesbury show 2013


Gillingham & Shaftesbury Show – A Welcome from the Show Organiser

sam braddick organiser

On behalf of the organising committee I would like to welcome all the exhibitors, traders, sponsors, stewards and visitors who together, combine to make this one of the best and most successful, traditional one day agricultural shows in the country. We are extremely fortunate to have so many wonderful people who give their time to help organise and run the Show. There is a dedicated gang who are on hand all the year round to maintain and improve the ground and what a wonderful job they have done to restore the fields.

There is a much larger team who turn out in the weeks preceding and immediately after the Show, to set up all the rings and animal penning, mark out the 500 plus trade stand sites, put up all the signs, set out the tables and display boards and all the one hundred and one jobs that need to be done to make the show tick. Then with many others they steward on show day, there are about 250 needed to ensure the classes, traffic and displays all run smoothly and afterwards there are three days of intensive clearing up, packing away and the final litter pick all done by willing volunteers.

We are also very grateful for all the help that we receive from local groups, carnival clubs, Scouts, Rotary & Lions Clubs and the many companies and individuals who help or provide us with equipment.

Thank you all so very much and we look forward to seeing everyone on Wednesday 14th. August 2019.

Show Secretary