Unlike most 20 year olds in this country, I can’t drive. I am learning (a term you should read with a grain of salt) albeit it with VERY slow progress. This means that I have to take trains when I travel across the country, which is what I did to get to Countryfile Live.

I got to Oxford station, largely unscathed but with a few bruises from an overly excited tourist on their way to Bicester Village. My next obstacle to overcome was getting from the station to Blenheim palace without getting stuck in hours of traffic. I ended up being dropped about 1.5 miles from the RBST stands. The walk was really exciting going past families and dogs eager to get into the showground, and see the rare breeds of course!

The word I would use to describe my initial walk into the show ground is definitely “overwhelmed”, by the number of people there, by the variety of stands and the cacophony of noises and smells. The smell coming from Adam’s Farm area was a comforting and familiar smell, reminding me of days when I was younger helping my Irish relatives with their animals. The Adam’s Farm area was constantly busy, with families enjoying the farm animals, hopefully getting young children interested in the conservation of farm animals. I couldn’t leave the stand without being stopped by someone or something trying to sell me something or catch my attention, the most memorable of which being passed a ‘welly boot to wang’ in the Joules stand.

Another word I’d use to describe my experience at Countryfile Live is “hot”. I am a very fair skinned blonde girl who is very prone to burning and who has never tanned in her whole life. Thankfully, because of the jaw-dropping number of stands at the event, shade was very easy to come by.

I really enjoyed the live shows that were put on in the main arenas, my personal favourite being one about the use of different animals in hunting and farming. There is something exhilarating about a bird of prey circling over you as it waits for the dummy ferret that will be launched out from under a prop. The show also demonstrated the uses of different breeds of dogs and more surprisingly (at least to me) the uses of ferrets. The obedience of the dogs made me disappointed in the training of my two dogs and definitely highlighted just how spoilt they are, but my dogs are adorable so I forgive them for their shortcomings.

(Image: Victor the Vaynol bull entertaining many visitors at the stand!)

It was brilliant being part of such a successful show, gaining a great number of memberships, including a life membership who was shocked by the heavy horse campaign and the help that our rare native breeds need. Countryfile Live also hosted the first ever British Charcuterie Awards where rare and native breeds had great success, winning lots of Bronze, Silver and Gold awards and the overall Best Producer award went to a Charcutier who uses Large Black pigs in some of his products.

This will be uploaded once my internship has finished and I would like to thank everyone who read my blog and to anyone who left a comment. I have really enjoyed being able to go out and find out more about the conservation work of RBST. I have learnt so much from this experience and am so grateful for this internship.