Show groups happy they're no longer royal

SANDRA CROSBIE
Last updated 12:00 05/05/2014

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The Royal Show may have been lost to Manfeild, but two Manawatu A&P societies are working together to ensure their traditional shows continue.

The Manawatu West Coast A&P Association and the Feilding IA&P Associations, which are both based at Manfeild, have jointly announced they will revert to running their own shows later this year.

The associations were part of a consortium that held the Royal Show at Manfeild in December last year.

The Royal Show was pulled from Manfeild this year and a two-year hosting deal was cancelled when the consortium fell over, based in part on the departure of Hot Wire Events Ltd.

In April 2012, the Manawatu West Coast A&P Association pulled out of the consortium, citing budget concerns.

At the time association president Maurice Pedley said it feared someone would "go broke".

"We couldn't put the Manawatu A&P show at that sort of financial risk if the event didn't work," he said.

Manawatu A&P Society honorary vice president Maxine Mulligan said the decision could now be described as a relief.

"We owed it to our older members that we took the prudent approach."

The first event it will hold is the Feilding Spring Jumping Show in September. This will be followed by the Manawatu West Coast A&P Show on November 8 and 9, and the Feilding Equestrian Show on December 5 and 6.

Mulligan said the society was considering attaining Royal Event status for some livestock categories, but had not had this confirmed yet.

"The livestock side of last year's Royal Show went well, and attracted good numbers and we hope to continue with offering a good show for our competitors."

In 2015, the Manawatu A&P will again stage its NZ Dairy Event Show at the end of January, and Feilding IA&P will hold its Autumn Jumping Show on February 21 and 22.

Mulligan said that both A&P associations wanted to thank the business and Feilding communities and the wider Manawatu region for their involvement and past support.

"We look forward to a vibrant and successful showing season."

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- Manawatu Standard

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