Mr Robin Swann, the North Antrim Ulster Unionist Party Assembly and Chairman of the Stormont Committee for Employment and Learning, has praised the “superb and outstanding” agricultural shows in Ballymena and Ballymoney.
Mr Swann, who is also North Antrim UUP Chairman and Party Chief Whip, has attended the constituency’s annual shows on many occasions as President of the Young Farmers’ Clubs of Ulster and Chairman of Rural Youth Europe.
And he urged the community to “make it a double delight for the region” by supporting the farming community “by buying local”.
He added: “The community is to be praised for their tremendous attendance at the annual shows and they can continue this support all year round by buying local produce.”
Assemblyman Swann also praised the organisers of the recent Ballymena and Ballymoney Shows on staging “very impressive and highly enjoyable events”.
Mr Swann had earlier made an appeal to the North Antrim community to rally behind the constituency’s farming sector and support both shows.
As well as the North Antrim shows, Assemblyman Swann also urged the Northern Ireland community to support their remaining local agricultural shows throughout the Province.
In his statement, Mr Swann said: “I congratulate the organisers of the Ballymena and Ballymoney Shows on the quality of their arrangements. I spent a most enjoyable time touring the stands and the events. One of the most impressive elements was the number of exhibitors and small businesses participating in the shows.
“This augers well for the future development of the farming community in the constituency. These annual agricultural shows have firmly established themselves as some of the premier events in the constituency’s calendar, and they have withstood the strains imposed on it by hurdles such as Foot and Mouth and the BSE crisis.
“Indeed, judging by the continued popularity with both the farming industry and the public, the annual shows have gained the credible name of being two of North Antrim’s ambassador events.
“This reputation has been built over the years through the hard work and dedication from those responsible for organising these quality shows.
“We also commend the commitment shown by everyone who helped make this year’s shows such beacons of success and professionalism for North Antrim,” said Assemblyman Swann.
More pictures in this week’s Ballymoney and Moyle Times.