Thousands of people visited Abergavenny’s Shire Horse Show at the weekend. ANDY RUTHERFORD reports.

ALL horses great and small graced Abergavenny’s Bailey Park at the 30th SouthWales Shire Horse Society show.

The event, popular with horse fans and families, attracted another four-figure crowd, although the attendance was down on last summer, despite the continued sunshine.

There were 14 shire classes and 11 for miniature horses, run through the International Miniature Horse and Pony Society, which were first held at the show last year.

The grand parade of shires, and supreme championships for shire/heavy horses, and for miniatures, rounded off the day.

More than 100 entries were made across the event, which also acted as a qualifier for the Shire Horse of the Year Championship, to be held as part of the Horse of the Year Show in Birmingham.

Society president Leslie Mouldon said he was very pleased with the turnout.

For Mr Moulden, involved with the society for 25 years, show day is a busy occasion, not least because he makes a point of going among the crowd regularly to say hello, and to explain some of the aspects of shire horse keeping.

“It’s a personal touch, but I enjoy it and I think people appreciate it when someone can talk to them about the animals and how they are presented,”

he said.

“For instance, it can take eight hours to polish the brasses on the leathers of one of the horses you see in the best-dressed harness class.

“It is a labour of love and we have people who come from miles away to take part.

“We are a small committee, but we have good support from many people and sponsors – and the Army Cadets, who have been around the admission spots and the site, have been fantastic.”

A classic car exhibition, a Punch and Judy show, other children’s entertainment, and the Harness Goat Society were among the other attractions.