The Royal Three Counties Show has today been announced as title sponsor of an exciting new sculpture trail for Gloucester. In partnership with Marketing Gloucester, The Royal Three Counties Show Gloucestershire Old Spots Trail Starring 'Henson Pig' will be taking place from June to August 2017.
Expanding on the success of last year’s Scrumpty Trail, there will be twenty sculptures in the city with an additional twenty around the county.
Ken Nottage, CEO of Three Counties, said: “We are thrilled to be joining forces with Marketing Gloucester to bring to life the all-new Old Spots Trail. The Henson family has a long-standing heritage with the Three Counties and we’re so pleased they will be lending their name to our own flagship pig. Formerly Joe Henson, and in more recent years his son Adam, have worked tirelessly to promote the vibrant world of agriculture and farming, championing rare breeds just like the Gloucestershire Old Spots. We cannot wait to see the trail bring a splash of colour and the countryside to the streets of Gloucestershire.”
The partnership with the Royal Three Counties Show coincides with Gloucestershire assuming hosting duties for the event on 16 -18 June 2017 at the Showground in Malvern. Next year, the long-established agricultural event will be celebrating all that is great about Gloucestershire.
Ken added: “The Royal Three Counties Show is a landmark event on the agricultural calendar and each June sees floods of families, farmers and furry and feathered friends flocking to immerse themselves in the 3-day spectacle. We’re immensely proud of the show’s status and plans are firmly underway as Gloucestershire takes up the post as Host County for 2017. Watch this space!”
The Royal Three Counties Show Gloucestershire Old Spots Trail Starring ‘Henson Pig’ will also highlight to other ancient livestock breeds synonymous with Gloucestershire, the Gloucester Cattle and the Cotswold Lion sheep.
The Gloucestershire Old Spots was the first pig to ever be given pedigree status. Known as the ‘orchard pig’, the Gloucestershire Old Spots originates from the Severn Valley pig’ where they foraged on wind fallen apples and whey – bi-products of two of the county’s most famous exports, cider and cheese. It was championed along with other rare breeds, by Joe Henson MBE, at Cotswold Farm Park when it opened in 1971. His son, Adam, took over the running of the park in 1999 and is a presenter on the BBC’s Countryfile. It is in Joe and Adam’s honour that the pig is named ‘Henson’.
The partnership between the Royal Three Counties Show and Marketing Gloucester will encourage a deeper understanding of Gloucestershire’s rural heritage, promoting cultural tourism around the county, whilst providing opportunities for the two organisations to raise money for their preferred charities.
Councillor Paul James, Leader of Gloucester City Council, said:
“I am delighted that we are working with the Royal Three Counties Show to celebrate one of Gloucestershire’s best known brands and to put Gloucester at the heart of it. I am confident that the Gloucestershire Old Spots sculptures will be just as charming and likeable as Scrumpty.”
Jason Smith, Chief Executive of Marketing Gloucester, said:
“The relationship with The Royal Three Counties Show will take this year’s sculpture trail to another level and is indicative of the success of Marketing Gloucester at forming relationships with partners of the highest calibre. The partnership will allow us to bring the sculpture trail to a much wider audience and make it more successful than ever before.”
From left to right, those photographed are: Ken Nottage, CEO of Three Counties; Diana Walton, Three Counties Head of Shows; Jason Smith, Chief Executive of Marketing Gloucester; Councillor Paul James, Leader of Gloucester City Council and Chairman of Marketing Gloucester