Attendance record broken at this year's National Ploughing Championship in Offaly

Single day record was broken on the opening day on Tuesday

Damian Moran

Reporter:

Damian Moran

Email:

damian@offalyexpress.ie

Attendance record broken

Attendance record broken at National Ploughing Championships

The 2017 National Ploughing Championships set a new attendance record over the three days at the site in Screggan over the three days.

A record breaking 291,500 visited over the three days, with exhibitors and visitors alike thoroughly enjoying themselves.

The single day record was broken on Tuesday when 112,500 people were in attendance.

Speaking at the close of business, NPA Managing Director Anna May McHugh said “Despite experiencing a wet Wednesday during the three day festival, the overall mood for this year’s Ploughing has been incredibly buoyant and positive. With so much for visitors to enjoy from quality livestock and serious machinery to fashion, celebrities and sports stars galore there was something for every member of the family to enjoy.”

A team worked through the night after Wednesday's heavy rain to have the site back on track for the visitors who attended today.

Attending today, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar congratulated the NPA on another successful year, he paid tribute to Ms Anna May McHugh, the NPA, staff and the several hundred volunteers required to host an event of it’s scale and scope.

Jack Nagle, a 16 year old student from Kerry was the popular winner of the Enterprise Ireland, NPA, FJ Innovation Arena 'People’s Choice Award' with his Tractor Safe Lock initiative.

The hotly contested National Brown Bread Baking final took place in the Aldi tent in front of an audience of several hundred. The overall winner in first place was Mary Conway from Sligo, who was absolutely delighted with her win.

Edward Roe from Tipperary beat off some stiff competition to be crowned the winner of the inaugural Macra Safe Driving competition.

In the ploughing competition Eamonn Tracey from Carlow won the overall Conventional class, while Wexford man John Whelan won the Reversible Ploughing competition. Both men will again represent Ireland at the World Ploughing contest in Germany next year.

The NPA wished everyone a safe journey home and thanked all for making this the most successful Championships of all time.