ROYAL HIGHLAND Show exhibitors have been contacted by event organisers to gauge their thoughts on a behind closed doors event.

Livestock exhibitors have been sent a scenario detailing this as an option under consideration for this year.

Proposed plans for cattle and sheep include a two-day competition with suggested dates of June 14 and 15 (Monday and Tuesday), with only exhibitors in Scotland allowed to attend.

The show’s organisers, the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland, have not confirmed any official change of date but have given exhibitors an indication of what the event might entail.

Further information included that only competitors and staff strictly necessary to deliver the event would be allowed access and that competitors and exhibits could arrive either the night before or on show days – showing and leaving on the day of competition. There may also be a restriction on entries.

This scenario also suggested that exhibitors bring caravans or stay in nearby hotels for one night and that alcohol would be prohibited – with this rule only being relaxed in line with Scottish government rules.

Judging would take place in the normal fashion in the usual rings and the Highland Hall would be used for stalling cattle. Strict social distancing would be enforced at all times and a thorough briefing on Covid-19 risk mitigation requirements would be provided in advance of attending.

RHASS is seeking feedback from members as to whether they would be willing to attend a show in this fashion and will be using their responses to shape and produce how the show will be delivered, if at all.

Exhibitors have been asked questions such as how many animals they intend to show, what breed and classes they would enter and how far they would be coming from, to give show organisers an indication of levels of interest and what numbers they would need to accommodate.

Following the announcement last week that the RHS would be cancelled, organisers have reached out to exhibitors for their input. An e-mail read: “Whilst this will be a competitor only show, we want as many people to experience the event as possible and will be broadcasting the entire day using a state of the art production suite.

“The footage will be streamed live and showcased later in the week as part of a series of high quality programming showcasing the best of Scottish agriculture!

“RHASS is and will continue to work closely with the Scottish Government and local authority on Covid-19 risk mitigation to ensure everyone’s safety and endeavour to create an event to showcase the Scottish agricultural sector and we value the part you play in that.”

A final decision on whether there will be any kind of show is expected to come in the next two weeks.