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Staff working around the clock to get ready for Ag Show

The Agricultural Exhibition is back this month (File photograph by Owain Johnston-Barnes)

All hands are on deck to prepare the Botanical Gardens for the upcoming Agricultural Exhibition, according to organisers.

Craig Burt, Parks Officer with the Department of Parks, told the Hamilton Rotary Club on Tuesday that the Department was working hard to prepare the gardens for the “bumper crowds” expected at the event, which runs from April 27 to 29.

“We like to see these community events,” he said. “That’s what it’s all about. That’s why some of us are stepping up, away from our normal jobs, to help put this on.”

He said the work had been bolstered by crews being moved from their normal rotations at locations such as Government House and the Arboretum to assist.

“We also have our community programme that works with the skills development guys, so they have been helping us do some work inside the Botanical Gardens,” Mr Burt said.

“It has been all hands on deck. We have been networking not just with industry partners, but all internal partners in the Government.”

Georgette Caines, one of the organisers of this year’s show, thanked teachers for their continued dedication to the annual event and their work to encourage students to take part.

She added that the organisers were still on the look-out for volunteers to help make the most out of this year’s event, noting the amount of hard work that must be done to make it a reality.

“It takes hours to set it up behind the scenes, it takes hours through the whole three days and it takes hours to break down the show,” she said.

Ms Caines said that since the Ministry of Public Works announced it would take over the popular event in February, staff had been working diligently.

“We have been steadily working getting the grounds ready, getting the buildings ready,” she said. “We have been working around the clock, 24 hours.

“We have been working Saturdays and Sundays, working up until up to 9pm, steadily trying to get everything prepared — and we are pretty much all there.”

Ms Caines said the team would receive the first entries for the various competitions on Monday morning, so it was important to have everything in place by then.

She added: “The horses will be having a practice run this weekend, so they will be getting their practice in as well.”

Ms Caines said that more than 2,100 people are expected to participate this year.

The first Agricultural Exhibition was held in 1843 at Mount Langton, Pembroke, before moving to the Botanical Gardens in Paget for the first time in 1922.

The show became an annual event in 1955, with this year’s event being the 80th.

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Published April 20, 2023 at 7:36 am (Updated April 21, 2023 at 1:49 pm)

Staff working around the clock to get ready for Ag Show

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