The Royal Cornwall Agricultural Association (RCAA) has reported a strong financial performance to members at its recent AGM.
The 2015 Royal Cornwall Show, which was blessed with fine weather, attracted the fourth highest attendance in the show’s 222-year history with a total of 126,256 visitors passing through the showground’s gates.
A visit from Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra, during the show’s second day, was a particular highlight.
Reflecting on his year in office, departing RCAA president, Major Charles Edward-Collins, said: “It is such a wonderful shop window for agriculture in Cornwall and long may it remain agriculturally based.”
A new president was elected with the Right Reverend Tim Thornton, Bishop of Truro, taking the reins for the 2016 Royal Cornwall Show. Major Edward-Collins wished his successor “the very best of luck” in the role. Sir Ferrers Vyvyan proposed Lady St Levan as president-elect.
Robert Cowie, of accountant Francis Clark, reported that in the year 2015/2016 “total incoming resources of £2.296 million was an overall increase of £179k” compared to last year’s figures.
The finances were bolstered by strong showground lettings, Pavilion Centre bookings and other non-show income which produced £265k, an increase of £18k. The show income increased by a “massive” £153k to just over £1.8 million.
An overall surplus for the year of £330k was more than double that recorded the previous year. With the Association’s finances “in a very sound position”, much of this surplus will be spent on capital and major refurbishment projects across the showground.
Christopher Riddle, RCAA secretary, told the meeting that the “vast demand” for trade space outstripped supply at the Royal Cornwall and each year interest increases.
He said: “I am never happy to have to turn away applicants for trade stands space but it is pleasing that the interest in the show is so strong that we find ourselves having to do so.”
Michael Bowden MBE, who retired as the RCAA’s trade stand organiser after the 2015 show, was thanked for his service and presented with a memento by Major Charles Edward-Collins.
The Royal Cornwall Show 2016 takes place from June 9-11.