Castle Hill Show: Lifetime of show work so rewarding

IN 1941, a young George Bennett attended a Junior Farmers Royal Easter Show Camp.

The camp staff explained how an agriculture show functioned and the Baulkham Hills resident was hooked.

"I've been connected to shows all my life," said Mr Bennett, now 89. "When I was out on the farm, I use to show fruit and veg at the Hunter.

"When I was at the show camp we had different activities to do and I saw first-hand what shows could do."

For more than 60 years, Mr Bennett has had a significant input in the junior judging competitions for the Sydney Royal Easter Show and Castle Hill Show.

This year he will volunteer at the cattle judging competition at the 128th Castle Hill Show, which runs March 28 to 30.

Due to construction on the North West Rail Link, horse events (except for the harness and heavy horses classes) will be on this weekend, March 22 and 23.

Mr Bennett's love of agriculture didn't stop at shows. He has completed agriculture diplomas, mentored young farmers and taught at the Hawkesbury Agriculture College in Richmond.

He said circumstances led him to pursue a career in agriculture.

"I grew up in a large family who couldn't afford to pay for me to go to Hawkesbury Agricultural College.

"It was during the Depression and I applied and won a scholarship to do an agriculture diploma."

His true passion was to help young people progress in their farming careers via agricultural shows.

"I've always been connected with young people.

It's about giving them an education and an understanding. The winners of these competitions end up becoming show judges. It's a progression."

Over three days from Friday to Sunday, there will be live entertainment, jousting competitions, a BMX display, fireworks and horse events.

The show will include seven group finals including three cattle, three sheep and a grain competition. The winners of the competitions will go on to the Sydney Royal Easter Show.

■Details: castlehillshow.com.au.

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