Summer shows deserve a good, Covid-free year

IT IS not only local businesses struggling today with the implications of working through the opening of the island’s borders to those double-vaccinated individuals heading to the island from within the Common Travel Area.

In any normal year, visitors would be a prime audience for the summer shows, but the South Show, while still going ahead next month, has announced various changes to how it sets up in part to ensure that it can cope with Covid.

At the time of writing, we understand that the West and North Shows are still going ahead in August, though they will be watching developments closely in the hope that they will not be affected in some way by travel or cross-border logistical issues.

The South Show is moving completely indoors, switching its outdoor events to the Professor Shaw Community Centre, with Show president Mike Weysom saying that the move was partly driven by Covid safety, ensuring that the hall was not overcrowded.

Last year all the summer agricultural shows were cancelled, and the only major event to go ahead was the Rocquaine Regatta, which, without issues of hiring in equipment and people from the UK, successfully shifted from its usual July date to early September.

We will hope that these integral parts of island life do all return to action next month, and hopefully be free of restrictions.

The South Show wants to see as many people involved as they can handle, either as volunteers, participants or simply visiting.

The year is especially critical for the North Show, which, all being well, will celebrate its 100 year celebrations at the end of August at Saumarez Park.

The financial position for all our big and much-loved summer events is ever precarious and they need all the help they can get for good weather, a good crowd and a bumper pay day next month.

The upside of Covid is it may have given organisers a year off to recharge their batteries. But back in harness and refreshed, they want, and deserve, restriction-free events and to enjoy success which will strengthen their resolve and commitment for years to come.

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