Launceston is often referred to as the gateway to Cornwall - the town has an 11th-century castle dominating the landscape


As the ancient capital of the county, Launceston is steeped in history. Sitting just over a mile awayfrom the Devon border, it is often referred to as the gateway to Cornwall - and with an 11th-century castle dominating the landscape, a great welcome visitors...

Celebrated poet Charles Causley sat at the foot of England and tickled its toes, according to one of his greatest fans – and for those in the know the festival which takes his name in his home town of one of Cornwall’s best.

But it’s not only the Charles Causley Festival in June which makes Launceston such a great place to be in the summer.

This year Cornwall’s Launceston’s celebrates its 125th year with a fantastic array of traditional rural pursuits as well as more modern additions, such as celebrity chefs and live music.


Taking place on 24 July there will be classes for cattle and sheep, horses, driving, agricultural horses and working hunter. There will be displays of falconry, pygmy goats, sheepdogs and racing ferrets. The South Tetcott Hunt Parade and hound puppies will also entertain the crowns.

Alongside trade stands of the best in Cornwall and Devon’s food, there will be arts, crafts and a chance to meet small businesses. There will be a floral art exhibition and the Women’s Institute and Young Farmers Club will also be there.

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The Launceston Agricultural Show has always been a traditional agricultural one-day show and 2014 is no exception. As previous years, the horse, cattle and sheep classes look to be well attended and the quality of exhibits will be as high as ever.

2014 sees an increase in the size of the Food Demonstration Marquee due to its huge success last year. This will see demonstrations by local boy, Andrew Rice from Homeleigh Garden Centre together with celebrity TV chefs James and Chris Tanner, who will be challenging each other to a Ready Steady Cook style competition.

Visitors with four-legged friends can enter the fun dog show on the day. The Theatre Tent will be buzzing with local talent from Launceston Town Band, Launceston Pop Choir, Bude Jive Club and a children’s steel band.

The show was established in 1887 – and due to the cancellation of shows during the Foot and Mouth epidemic and 2012’s appalling weather, this year will mark the 125 milestone.

Show president Philip Warren says: “From a young boy attending the show when it was held at Hurdon in the town, where I gazed in wonder at the livestock and tractors, through to the marvellous show last year, where I noticed the children staring in wonderment as I did, the same basic thread holds sway: community coming together through agriculture.

“Livestock is about renewal and progression; we hope that the Launceston Agricultural Show renews the progresses for another 125 years.”

Tickets are available on the day, Adult £10, Child £3.


Where to eat

The Launceston Fryer

Liberty Coffee

La Bouche Creole

Eagle House Hotel

Poole Farm

Laurence House Museum

Tamar Otter & Wildlife Centre