10 May 2025

Highland Cattle owners looking forward to show their “iconic” animals as they make their debut at the Nottinghamshire County Show

A Nottinghamshire family whose Highland Cattle have become stars in their local village are looking forward to them winning a host of new fans when they make their debut at this year’s county show.

The Burgess family – Michael, his wife Sandra, and son Ben - will be bringing three of their cattle to the show for the first time after the event’s organisers opened up a Highland Cattle class in its popular livestock competition.

The county show takes place on May 11 at the Newark Showground, and has a number of classes in its cattle section, with prizes available for breeds such as Dexter, Hereford, Lincoln Red and Longhorn Cattle.

But for this year, they have added the Highland Cattle class in response to local breeders keen to show off their animals at the event as well as promote the breed to visitors.

Michael and Sandra have owned Highland Cattle since 2012 and take part in livestock competitions across the UK, but will only have a short journey on the morning of the show since they live just six miles away from the Newark Showground, in Norwell.

They, along with a neighbour and friend, Helen Loram, will be showing two-year-old bulls Linus and Perceus and two-year-old heifer Ebony, who are part of a 15-strong herd, or fold, as a herd of Highland Cattle are known.

Michael and Sandra keep their cattle in fields in and around Norwell, where the animals’ distinctive horns and shaggy coats have earned them local celebrity status, with people often taking photos of them when they are walking along local roads while being transferred from field to field.

Michael said: “We’re really looking forward to the show and we’re hoping that as many other Highland Cattle breeders as possible will be able to come along to give us a good turnout.

“I’m sure they’ll be popular with the crowds, because people really like Highland Cattle. They’re iconic. It’s the horns and the shaggy hair, you see a lot of paintings of them and people take photos of our cattle all the time.

“They love it when we’re herding them along the road, and we’ve also been asked to take them to the odd wedding or two in the past.”

The new Highland Cattle class is one of a number of new additions to the show, including a new Country Craft Village section, which will feature local traders selling their homemade wares, and a debut appearance in the main ring by the Imps Motorcycle display team from London.

There will be an appearance from The Sheep show, a family-friendly dog show and a visit from White Post Farm and the Wee Donkey Company.

Elsewhere, the event will also showcase the talents of creators, cooks and gardeners in its Make, Bake and Grow and floral arts section, which will feature prize flower-arranging, cake competitions, home-grown vegetables and painting and crafts.

The event is staged by the Newark and Nottinghamshire Agricultural Society and its show organiser, Elizabeth Halsall, says the addition of Highland Cattle will help boost the popularity of the livestock competition.

She said: “We’ve been contacted by local Highland Cattle breeders asking for their own section in our livestock competition and we’re very happy to accommodate them this year.

“The animals are a huge draw for our visitors and the livestock competition is a wonderful way to showcase the different breeds of sheep, cattle and pigs that are farmed in this part of the world.

“Highland cattle have definitely become an iconic sight in the English countryside and we’re looking forward to welcoming Linus, Perceus and Ebony [HC1] [EH2] [EH3] [SB4] to Newark Showground on May 11.”

Tickets are currently being sold at a discounted rate of £13. For more information – including on how to become a member of the society and enjoy exclusive access - visit www.nottinghamshirecountyshow.com