Eric Ollerenshaw column: Not quite as sheepish after visit to agricultural show

Eric Ollerenshaw MP
Eric Ollerenshaw MP
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It was great the other weekend to get across to the Over-Wyresdale Horticultural and Agricultural Show at Abbeystead.

Luckily the rain held off long enough for me to spend part of the morning watching the judging and learning about the varying type of sheep. I am now proud to say that I actually think I know the difference between a ‘gimmer’ and a ‘shearling’.

I also managed to call in on the Galgate Gaslight Show held at Ellel Village Hall. This traditional event which is now in its 152nd year originated from a fundraising effort with the aim to bring gas to Galgate but now continues to be a major attraction in the village. As usual I can only congratulate all the efforts of the entrants as well as thank the organisers and the judges for all their hard work.

However they are always looking for more help and are already starting to look to next year’s show, so if you think you have some time to spare and would like to get involved you can contact the organising committee

Finally, I thought I would mention what seems to have become a highly controversial topic , namely High Speed 2, especially now the usual ‘rumblings’ have started following the progression of this large national infrastructure project.

I do find it slightly ironic that there were very few complaints about the massive over-runs and delayed Thameslink upgrade in London which is costing £6billion and counting, not to mention the £16billion project of Crossrail 1 – but it is London, after all now, isn’t it!

The reality is that HS2 is needed – not just to make journey times faster between the North and the South but to increase room on the existing lines.

Only the other week Network Rail turned down Virgin’s application for two trains a day between Blackpool and Euston on the grounds that there was no room on the West Coast Mainline.

The fact is we are running at full capacity now, which is clearly good for the environment and good for the country, but in my view it is vital the planning happens now to allow for extra between London and the North.

As always, please contact me if I can be of any help. I represent everyone who lives in Lancaster regardless of how or whether you vote. My contact details are below.

Email: Phone: 0207 219 7096 or 01995 672975

Write: House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA or 59 High Street, Great Eccleston, Lancs, PR3 0YB. Web:’