Over 10,000 visitors thronged to Reaseheath College’s Family Festival on Sunday, making the event the best and biggest since its launch 22 years ago.
The action-packed festival, held on the college’s Nantwich campus, offered hundreds of fun activities and displays for record-breaking crowds in a day of perfect spring sunshine.
Headline acts included The Dog and Duck Show, an entertaining show in which sheepdogs and ducks worked together, and the world’s only horseback falconer, Jonathan Marshall, who thrilled spectators with a breathtaking display featuring a peregrine falcon and highly schooled Spanish horses.
Family entertainment was guaranteed from Team Extreme, world class BMX stunt riders and skaters, and from an educational Sheep Show, where families learned about different breeds of sheep and watched a shearing demonstration.
Agriculture students were up at dawn preparing animals for their own calf and sheep shows, which was judged on handling ability. Renowned judges Ray Brown and John Gate had a difficult task to select their winners, but Molly Johnson was eventually awarded the calf show championship with Marcus Callwood taking reserve champion. Abbey Lewis was champion handler in the sheep show, with Mark Thomas as reserve champion.
Other highlights included tours of the college zoo, a fun dog show, zorbing, a display of military vehicles, a land train and horse drawn carriage rides.
‘Have a go’ activities run by staff and students including tractor driving and quad bike challenges, a mechanical horse, brick laying, plastering and the chance to scale a high ropes course. Other highlights included tree climbing and chainsaw demonstrations, an engineering simulator and the chance to see the college’s industry standard food processing halls and horticultural glasshouses.
Crowds enjoyed relaxing on the lawn listening to musical acts and sampling locally produced products and ice creams.
Reaseheath Principal Meredydd David said: “I was very proud of the way staff and students worked together to prove a programme of great activities and events which were educational, entertaining and engaging. Each year we attract more and more people to our fantastic college and we were overwhelmed with compliments throughout the day.
“Our Family Festival is our chance to showcase what we do best and to exhibit the skills, knowledge and enthusiasm of our staff and students. We help to reconnect people to the countryside, to food and farming and to the future management of the world.”
Photos thanks to Tim Jervis.