A summer of celebration was planned for the National Sheep Association (NSA) in 2020 to celebrate 40 years at its home on the Three Counties Showground, near Malvern, Worcestershire, however due to the ongoing Covid-19 outbreak, the event has been put on ice until larger gatherings are once again permitted.
Nevertheless, in recognition of the desire of NSA’s members and supporters to partake in ongoing development, NSA has decided to proceed with aspects of the NSA Sheep event that people know and enjoy, with a series of two day virtual events starting this August.
NSA Chief Executive Phil Stocker comments: “Of course, all at NSA were incredibly disappointed to cancel our flagship event this summer. But as work progresses on bringing a new, exciting, virtual event to our members our team at head office as well as the extended NSA organisation is excited to see how our members and others will engage with our series of virtual events.”
The ‘Virtual celebration of sheep farming’ will provide sheep farmers with the opportunity to log in to a new, exciting NSA website for the series of events from the comfort and convenience of their own homes to join online seminars (webinars) and workshops, browse interactive videos from trade and breed society stands, enter competitions and more.
To host the events a new NSA events website will be launched on Saturday 1st June, allowing exhibitors to apply to be part of the series of events and enabling visitors to pre-register to attend and also to register for the planned series of webinars.
Each event is themed to allow a focus to be made that is relevant to the season and the tasks that farmers might be undertaking or policy that could be affecting us all at that time. The series will be kicked off with the first event titled ‘Breeding the best’ on Wednesday 12th and Thursday 13th August, a theme that will allow NSA affiliated breed societies the opportunity to share information at a time when many farmers will be considering their plans for the upcoming breeding season.
Advice and guidance will also be delivered by a packed webinar timetable where NSA is pleased to be supported once again by leading names from industry. Webinars will be open to everyone to join, with free registration for each webinar available in advance and on the two days of the events.
The opportunity to view new products and demonstrations is an event highlight and this will still be available with trade stand exhibitors delivering information through their own dedicated area of the website.
Those with a competitive nature will be able to get involved in a series of competitions that can be entered before and during the event that will give visitors to the site a chance to win an array of excellent prizes. Competitions will include a fleece competition managed by long standing NSA supporters, British Wool, a photography competition, carcase competition, sponsored by meat processors Mutchmeats and breed society stand contests.
NSA Sheep Event Organiser Helen Roberts says: “We have been so pleased to receive continued support from our exhibitors and breed societies ahead of the first August event. The NSA Sheep Event is seen as a business to business event, offering sheep farmers the opportunity to visit a show that is completely focussed on sheep and shepherding. This will not be forgotten at our virtual event with our overall aim to provide the countries sheep farmers with advice that can really help with development of their flocks, whether that is in the form of a webinar or through a trade stand exhibitor launching and demonstrating a new innovative product.”