Producer’s dealt another blow from cancellation of show
REALITY of the government's decision to ban gatherings of 500 people or more due to coronavirus is slowly sinking in for producers who were preparing to enter this year's Warwick Show.
A decision was made last Friday to cancel the 153rd show, leaving the community shocked and devastated.
It was one prime cattle chief steward Ben Johnson said would "hurt the community and show society in a big way".
"We hadn't confirmed our numbers yet but there would have been 50 or 60 cattle entered for this year," Mr Johnson said.
"It's terrible - my opinion it's going to hurt in a big way.
"At the same time, if they're serious about it, it's worth doing what they're doing to prevent the spread."
Recent rainfall had created a wave of positivity across the livestock industry, with many producers eager to showcase their stock after the devastating effects of drought had crippled the industry.
Unsure of whether this year's entries were higher than normal, Mr Johnson said the effect wouldn't just be felt for prime cattle producers but all sections of the show.
"To try and get entries not just for the cattle but all the livestock sections has been difficult - producers just don't have the stock numbers there," he said.
"The rain has meant the stock is in good enough condition really.
"I guess everyone would just be disappointed they can't showcase their livelihood."
The decision to cancel the show was one which wasn't made lightly according to events and marketing co-ordinator Teilah McKelvey, who said the reality of it all is still sinking in.
"At the moment, it's just trying to gain knowledge about what the processes are moving forward," Mrs McKelvey said.
"We're speaking with peak bodies at the moment as to what will happen."
With a range of schools eager to enter new categories at the show, Mrs McKelvey said the community needed to rally together behind all industries at a loss from the cancellation.
"I'm sure that for any exhibitor coming on board, this is just another blow," she said.
"We need to be there to support them as a community and we need to be mindful about how much people can take.
"The knock-on effect is something that will be inevitable, with hotel bookings and subcontractors being cancelled.
"It's unfortunate, not just for our event but any event."