First of all, a big thank you to all the participants in this the Federation’s 63rd annual show.  Without the entries, there would be no show and this year there were 116 entries, slightly down on previous years.  Fortunately,  that still takes us over the number required (101) by the BBKA for entitlement to their “Blue Riband” award.

The day (Saturday 12th November) went off smoothly and attracted a good crowd to the St Johns Methodist Hall.  Our opener, the Hon. Clare Christian BSc President of Tynwald was charming and erudite. Her opening speech was entertaining and well received and she clearly took some delight in presenting the Prizes.

We were lucky this year to have not just one, but two qualified Honey Judges in the form of Peter and Christine Matthews from Dumfries and Galloway.  Peter was assiduous in his judgement of the exhibits, treating a small but appreciative gathering to a session of open judging on Saturday morning.  And Christine gave us an enlightening talk and slideshow on current and historical uses for honey in medecine and health.

Much of the silverware this year went to Janet Thompson who also received the Blue Riband and (partly in recognition of her tireless work as Federation Secretary) the Herbie Quirk Prize for the Federation member making the most significant contribution to Manx Beekeeping.  Norrie and Esther Mills as usual jointly failed to go home empty handed, and it was with great pleasure that we saw junior member Alfie Leach take home one of  the major prizes.  The beginners prizes went to newcomer Ralph Mitchell.  A full list of prizewinners can be found here.

A welcome addition to the exhibition this year was the colourful and enchanting artwork produced by Rainbows and Brownies troops from around the Island. There were over 120 pieces! which made the job of judging challenging indeed for prominent local artist Marg Hewson who was captivated with many of the pieces and studied the exhibits for  over 2 hours in the painful process of elimination.  Many of the prizewinners, accompanied by their families, attended the Show and were presented with personalised jars of honey for their efforts.  All the winning entries can be seen below.

Thanks are due also to the volunteers who provided both the excellent substance, and the staff for the most welcome afternoon refreshments.

As ever, the lovely Tanya has posted a comprehensive write up and some great pictures on her blog over at lovelygreens.

 

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