HOPES THAT this year's postponed NSA Sheep Event would go ahead in October have been dashed, with the confirmation that the event is now entirely cancelled.

The flagship event in the National Sheep Association calendar, NSA Sheep 2020 had originally been planned to take place in July, then postponed to October, but now, like so many other events affected by the ongoing restrictions and concerns surrounding Coronavirus (Covid-19) its plug has been entirely pulled.

NSA chief executive Phil Stocker said: “All at NSA are so disappointed to have to cancel our most popular of events. We recognise the event provides the opportunity for the sheep farming community to come together for a valuable day of knowledge exchange, a chance to view new and innovative products and to enjoy an opportunity to catch up with friends. But the ongoing Covid-10 pandemic and uncertainty surrounding it have unfortunately left us with no choice but to cancel the event this year.”

The national event will now return to its usual home at the Three Counties Showground, Malvern, Worcestershire in 2022, as a biennial event on Wednesday July 27, 2022. In the meantime, NSA is planning to deliver some of the seminars, workshops and more that visitors would have enjoyed at the 2020 event via webinars and virtual activities.

Event organiser Helen Roberts commented: “We are immensely disappointed to cancel Sheep 2020 but we are now working on some really interesting plans to keep our work with the sheep industry alive until we can get back to more normal times. Thinking about this positively we may not be able to do a one-day event, but our emerging plans could be seen as a forthcoming ‘season for sheep farming’.

"Most of our plans will offer opportunities for trade, breed societies, and other interested organisations to be involved, to promote their products and offers to the industry," said Ms Roberts.

“The changes that sheep farming is facing will not be put on hold until we can get back together face to face, and it is crucial that we press forward, hopefully with the support of the sector to help our industry through what is a challenging time and to make sure we capitalise on the opportunities ahead.”

Further information on the NSA’s plans for increased online activity will be shared soon – but to discuss potential involvement in this and other NSA activities, contact Ms Roberts on 07976 803066 or email helen@nationalsheep.org.uk.