IT'S NOT difficult to see why people are taking issue with the RHASS' management over staff losses and changes to management style. But it is also easy to see that changes needed to be made to what historically has been an unwieldy organisation.

Not the least of the challenges that the modern RHASS faced was to comply with the increasingly onerous terms of staying within its charitable status. It is also having to put into place plans which were consigned to the back burner for many years because of a commercial and political decision to enlarge its next door neighbour, Edinburgh Airport.

Quite rightly, while RHASS vehemently opposed these plans, a lot of midnight oil was burned in camera pursuing plans A, B and C, in case an alternative show site was needed; a truncated show would be necessary; or even a move outwith the area would have to be considered. It should have been no surprise, then, that spending plans were on hold while the deliberations over the future of the airport took place.

That threat has largely, but not entirely, disappeared and the latest generation of executive members are keen to make up for those lost years. Maybe too quickly for some, it would appear, but there remains little doubt that behind the smokescreen of staff movements, things are moving on at a pace that has not happened at Ingliston for some years.

A lot of this has been root and branch infrastructure investment which, while it may be largely invisible – like modern drainage, electrical supply, plumbing and upgrading wi-fi capability – requires a huge amount of capital expenditure. That is also the case of the new 'members' facility – though RHASS doesn't want to call it that – which will be highly visible.

While the industry, quite rightly views it as a talisman for Scottish agriculture, within the locale that it stands, it also plays role as a year-round venue for many different things. It may be a surprise for some to learn that there is at least one 'event' on at Ingliston for every week of the year.

It is also ideally suited, now that the tram link to the airport is in place, to become a truly world-class destination.

Where the maturity of the organisation will come to the fore, though, is being able to stay fundamental to its ideology in the minds of the farming community from which it rose, but also embrace the opportunities which exist outwith agriculture which may bankroll its many aspirations for the role it plays within the industry. RHET, through education, being one of its most important.

That is where the mettle of this next generation in charge of RHASS will be judged. But, there has been nothing to suggest that the organisation – as levelled by some – is in danger of slipping into a similar meteoric fall like that of the Royal Agricultural Society of England's Royal Show. That was a disaster which could have been spotted by myopic idiot from 100 miles away, but was seemingly missed for a decade by men whose bowler hats had slipped over their eyes.

That won't happen here and the resistance currently being felt at Ingliston is testament to the warmth for which it is held. As long as that is there, the show will go on.