Stephen Akrigg with one of his goats

Yorkshire Dales Farmers dairy diary

Stephen Akrigg with one of his goatsA farmer from the Yorkshire Dales will be centre screen as the “star” of the 2012 Great Yorkshire Show video. Today (1 March) sees the launch of the first in a series of episodes which follows the progress of Stephen Akrigg as he prepares to compete in the show’s Cheese and Dairy Section. Dates for England’s premier agricultural event are Tuesday 10 – Thursday 12 July.

For the last five years Mr Akrigg has been successfully competing with his goats’ cheese and milk at England’s premier agricultural show, but this year there is an extra pressure on gaining a top award as his progress will be followed on the show’s website. ( And, the 2012 series has already received support from celebrity chef and regional food champion, Rosemary Shrager.

The episodes will give a “behind the scenes” look at the cheesemaking process, from milking the goats, through the complexities of production to finally bringing the entries to be assessed by the judges. The interviews are being carried out by Claire Montgomery, a familiar face from the news team at Tyne Tees Television.

Mr Akrigg keeps around 150 cross bred goats at his home, Yellison Farm, Carlton near Skipton. It is very much a family enterprise with Yellison cheese and dairy products sold in the farm shop, as well as being used by top chefs, both locally and nationally.

Jayne Hickinbotham, the Cheese and Dairy Show co-ordinator said:

This section of the Great Yorkshire Show has gone from strength to strength until it is now one of the best exhibitions of cheese and dairy products in the country. Hours and hours of work go into the preparations and I’m sure it will be extremely interesting for viewers to see what is involved.

The Great Yorkshire Show attracts around 130,000 visitors each year with exciting ring attractions, some of the best animals in Britain, top class show jumping, and exciting fashion shows and demonstrations of country skills. The event is organised by the Yorkshire Agricultural Society.


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