Kaspar Nero, the Cotswold ram, was on his best behaviour as farmers gathered at St Peter’s and St Paul’s Church in Long Compton to celebrate an important date in the agricultural calendar.
Organised by the Moreton-in-Marsh and District Agricultural & Horse Show Society, Plough Sunday is a traditional occasion with origins dating back to medieval times. The start of the 2019 farming cycle was marked with a plough, a milk churn and Kaspar Nero blessed by the Revd Stuart Allen.
Steve Parkes, who shows Cotswold sheep and brought Kaspar Nero to the church, said: ‘It’s quite an honour to bring a sheep to a church. We should do it more often.’
Ed Hicks, the Moreton Show Society chairman and Simon Randall, the president, gave the readings while the address - on the theme of sustainable and environmentally-friendly farming - was given by Charles Hunter Smart, Estate Manager at Bradwell Grove, home of the Cotswold Wildlife Park.
The service heralded the start of a big year for the Moreton-in-Marsh and District Agricultural & Horse Show Society, which is celebrating its 70th anniversary.
Television and radio presenter, Sybil Ruscoe is the guest speaker at a special dinner to mark 70 years at The Frogmill Hotel at Shipton Oliffe, near Andoversford on Saturday, February 2. Tickets are available by calling the Moreton Show office on 01608 651908.