As official photographer for Living Heritage Events, I do a lot of travelling across the UK to cover their country shows and food festivals. Burghley Country Show has to be one of my absolute favourites! The setting is just stunning, and it seems to be a very laid back, spread out kind of show, with something different happening around every corner.
If you've got to camp, the best place to camp has to be beside the lake. It is a gorgeous old listed bridge, only open in the daytime, so between 7am and 7pm, if you want to get to the other side, you have to ford the lake at that point. Of course, that is where everyone went to exercise their dogs and I enjoyed photographing them. I think I shall designate a whole blog to the pack of sealyham terriers I photographed there, so watch for that next week!
I did, however, find it a most excellent place to photograph our resident jester, Fiery Jack. He was rowing around the show in his little 'boat' complaining about a 'leaky bottom' to anyone who would listen (and many who wouldn't) so there was only one place for him to try it out! He's a great sport and a fab model, and we got some great shots, egged on by the crowd on the bridge, many of whom were getting their mobile cameras lined up and hoping he would step back a little too far into the deeper water...
We had a huge flyball competition at this show. Flyball is a crazy chaotic relay race between a team of four dogs who race over a series of jumps to collect a tennis ball and hurtle back with it. With sixty three teams there were a lot of dogs and a lot of noise! I spent a wile there, but prefer the skill of the gun dogs next door! And of course, in the afternoon I'm based at the Fun Dog Show where I have my little mobile studio for doggy portraits (click here to see these), but also do some photos of the show as it goes on. I also thoroughly enjoyed getting reacquainted with the Burne Bloodhounds pack - although they are difficult to photograph because as soon as you go in the ring, the whole pack 'hunts' you, which generally means landing flat on my back and licked to death while desperately trying to keep the camera free from hound slobber!
The chefs were great too. This is Raz, with his top team of helpers and tasters. We're gearing up for two big food festivals at Sandringham and Nottingham this summer, so I was after a few foodie type pictures… need to work some more on that at the next show!
I wanted to spend time with the horse-boarders, the ferrets, the Moment In Time history re-enactors and the falconry guys, but there is never quite enough time at these shows. I did, however, need to get a picture of our chainsaw carvers in preparation for the world championships in August. They are always willing to pose and we had fun with it.
Meanwhile, our next Living Heritage Country Show is down in Kent at the end of June. If you're in the area do come along! It really is a fab day out for the whole family - not forgetting the family dog!!
As for me, I still have a few spaces in my diary for this summer - so if you're running an event and need a photographer, please get in touch!