A look back at the Lismore Show

THE 1939 Lismore Show was planned in the shadow of World War II, in which the first shots had been fired when the show started on October 17.

The UK High Commissioner in Australia, Sir Geoffrey Whiskard, led the opening ceremony, at a time when the government herepresented desperately needed exportable primary products from Australia.

While the North Coast National continued during WWI – except in 1915 when drought crippled the region – by 1940 it was clear that with so many men away at war and others in the community fully focused on the war effort, the show wasbecoming untenable.

The 1940 show was the last for three years and in 1943, the A&I Society replaced the usual event with a one-day patriotic sports day.

Cattle were not included, but a mini-show of pigs, poultry, horticultural and vegetable growers supplemented the sports activities.

The show resumed in 1944, when more than £3000 was raised forpatriotic organisations.

Against a background of national rejoicing that the war was over, the peacetime show in 1945 brought an immediate focus on the future.

The Show Society declared that peace involved a responsibility to encourage new thoughts and improvements in methods of primary production to cope with the economic vagaries of the new world order.

The show embarked on a substantial development plan to improve facilities at the showground.

The 1946 Lismore Show was held just a few weeks after the proclamation of Lismore as a city.

The Duke of Gloucester returned for a second time to open the show, this time as the Governor-General of Australia.

This first fully planned peace-time show since 1938 was a triumph, heralding the new era of growth and prosperity to come.

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