Our History

In the early 1900’s, there was considerable discussion amongst district landowners in regard to holding a Show, with many new settlers having arrived from Victoria, where the benefits of agricultural societies were fully recognised. At the time, the Farmers’ and Settlers’ Association was very well supported and held an annual Carnival.

A Pastoral and Agricultural (P & A) Association was established in Gilgandra on 25 March 1911 with a management committee elected at its first general meeting, held at the Imperial Hotel. This meeting also resolved to investigate the availability of suitable sites for a Show ground.

The first committee meeting of the Gilgandra P & A Association was held at Tattersall’s Hotel on Saturday 6th May 1911, at 4pm. Acting Secretary Arthur Fitzhardinge was voted to the chair, and announced the ballot for the election of officers and committee as follows: President: William Stockings; Vice-Presidents: Messrs. Robert Stanley, Henry McClure, Arthur F. Garling; Committee, Messrs. Arthur Fitzhardinge, Edward E. Beveridge, Neil I. McLennan, Harry Stockings, William Priddle, William C. Rolls, Oliver J. McCutcheon, John Kemp-Bruce, William Creenaune, Henry Machin, Archibald Rogers, James J. O’Brien, Edward J. Foley, George Chandler, Gustav A. Semmler, Robert Moad, James Patrick, William E. Linke, Thomas Foran, Walter Hickman, John M. McCarthy, John Lithgow, Wilhelm H. Scholz, Peter J. Anderson, Horatio Beveridge, Charles H. Richards, Phillip J. Whiteman, Albert Townsend, John E. M. Gilmour and Dr. Henry Peet. The Secretary’s allowance was fixed at £50 per annum on the motion of Messrs. Moad and Scholz. Efforts to secure a show ground were made at this meeting and on the motion of Messrs. Moad and Machin, it was decided that the President (Mr. Stockings), Messrs, Stanley, McClure, Rankin and the Secretary be appointed as a subcommittee to enquire into the suitability of available sites for a showground and to report to the general committee.

The next meeting of the committee was held on 20th May 1911, at the Royal Hotel and Mr. Fitzhardinge was appointed Secretary by 16 votes to 11. The other applicant was Mr. Henry W. Mitchell.

A report to the management meeting held on 11th September 1911 indicated that the Department of Lands had agreed to the allocation of a parcel of land adjoining the railway station. The committee agreed that a parcel of 35 acres should be applied for.

The first Gilgandra Show was held on Wednesday 15th May 1912 at the Racecourse, as the permanent Showground site had not yet been developed. The Show was officially opened by the then Minister for Agriculture, Mr. John Trefle. A crowd of over 2,500 attended, and entries numbered 800, far exceeding the expectations of the committee.

In 1913 the Show was held Gilgandra Showground for the first time, following completion of the (original) main pavilion which still stands. Gilgandra P & A Association joined the Royal Agricultural Society in October of that year.

On 19th October 1918, Keith McAllister, Walter A. Barden and Harry Stockings were appointed as the first Showground Trustees.

The first Show Ball was held in 1934, and by 1936 membership had increased to almost 500 with Show entries exceeding 2,000.

Gilgandra Show was abandoned for 1942 due to the Second World War, with one-day patriotic events held in 1943 and 1944 to aid the war effort. A two-day patriotic Show was held on 14 and 15 August 1945, with the second day coinciding with the announcement of the Japanese surrender. The full two-day Show returned in 1946 after a four-year break.

In 1947, the Show date was changed from August to May.

In the following decades, many improvements were made to the Showground, including new main pavilion, offices, luncheon pavilion, amenities blocks, poultry pavilion, bar, steel cattle yards, and upgraded water and power supplies. In addition to the annual Show, the ground has been utilised for harness racing, pony club, polo crosse, kennel club shows, rodeos, cricket matches, livestock sales, an isolation camp, scout rally, social gatherings and live entertainment.

In 1988, the Gilgandra P & A Association became incorporated as Gilgandra Show Society Inc.

The 100th annual Show was held in 2015.

During 2019-20, a new dining hall and offices were built on the site of the former Secretary’s office and Committee room.

While the 2020 Show was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, two new amenities blocks were commissioned during the year. A new stable block was constructed in 2021.

Gilgandra Show Society Inc. is proud to present the annual Show as a celebration of our local agricultural heritage and ongoing achievements.

Executive History

  • Presidents
  • William Stockings (1911-1912)
  • Robert Stanley (1913-1915)
  • Keith McAllister (1916-1922)
  • Walter A. Barden (1923)
  • Keith McAllister (1924)
  • Gerald M. McKellar (1925-1926)
  • Robert Stanley (1927-1946)
  • Arden R. Burrell (1947-1958)
  • James W. Wilson (1959-1962)
  • Rees M. Stanley (1963-1965)
  • Clarence Doud (1966-1968)
  • Rob S. Beveridge (1969-1971)
  • Clarence Doud (1972-1974)
  • Doug F. Horwood (1975-1977)
  • Jack McAllister (1978-1980)
  • Allan Christie (1981-1983)
  • Len Hosegood (1984-1986)
  • Ross Barden (1987-1989)
  • John Mudford (1990-1991)
  • Colin Rogers (1992-1994)
  • Allan Christie (1995-1997)
  • Colin Zell (1998-2000)
  • Barrie Batten (2001-2003)
  • Gary Selems (2004-2006)
  • Colin Zell (2007-2009)
  • Ross Barden (2010-2012)
  • Barrie Batten (2013-2015)
  • Claire Mudford (2016)
  • Ross Barden (2017)
  • Alan Smith (2018-2022)
  • Secretaries
  • Arthur Fitzhardinge (1911-1912)
  • Gordon Christie (1913-1946)
  • Jack Christie (1916-1919 Acting)
  • Allan Christie (1947-1976)
  • Dawn Lithgow (1977)
  • Ida Ryan (1978-1980)
  • Joy Marchant (1981-1992)
  • Deborah Allen (1993-1995)
  • Tanya Hutchison (1995-2002)
  • Rochelle Godber (2003-2005)
  • Sally Foran (2004-2007)
  • Gai-Maree Wilkinson (2008)
  • Beryl Barden (2009-2010)
  • Rose Rushton (2011-2015)
  • Stephen Basham (2015)
  • Rachel Thomas (2016-2017)
  • Madeline Foran (2017-2019)
  • Iain Thurlow (2020-2022)
  • John Mudford (1990-1991)
  • Colin Rogers (1992-1994)
  • Allan Christie (1995-1997)
  • Colin Zell (1998-2000)
  • Barrie Batten (2001-2003)
  • Gary Selems (2004-2006)
  • Colin Zell (2007-2009)
  • Ross Barden (2010-2012)
  • Barrie Batten (2013-2015)
  • Claire Mudford (2016)
  • Ross Barden (2017)
  • Alan Smith (2018-2022)
  • Treasurers
  • George Rankin* (1911-1922)
  • William A. Brown* (1923-1937)
  • William C. Highfield* (1938-1939)
  • John Murray* (1940-1948)
  • Keith Burge* (1949-1953)
  • Edgar A. Dart* (1954-1960)
  • Alan Carr-Boyd* (1961-1966)
  • Clarrie Shaw* (1967-1972)
  • Peter Burns* (1973-1975)
  • Ken Wood* (1976-1981)
  • John Thurkettle* (1982-1987)
  • Brian Stannard* (1988-1990)
  • John Packham* (1991-1992)
  • Keith Pincombe* (1993-1995)
  • Trevor Green* (1996-1998)
  • Joy Marchant (1999-2015)
  • Jim Claringbold (2016)
  • Barbara Prout (2017)
  • Alan Smith (2018)
  • Claire Mudford (2019)
  • Joy Marchant (2020)
  • Hayden Whiteman (2021-2022)
  • Barrie Batten (2001-2003)
  • Gary Selems (2004-2006)
  • Colin Zell (2007-2009)
  • Ross Barden (2010-2012)
  • Barrie Batten (2013-2015)
  • Claire Mudford (2016)
  • Ross Barden (2017)
  • Alan Smith (2018-2022)

* Honorary Treasurer position held by local CBC, later NAB branch Manager

Vintage Prize Cards

Minutes of First Meeting, 1911

GWC 1931 Headline

The Missing Shows

Our 105th show was held in 2021, which represents a shortfall of five annual shows since 1912. This is due to a combination of two shows being abandoned, and three replacement events not accorded full show status. Due to World War II, our 1942 show was cancelled, with “patriotic shows” held in 1943, 1944 and 1945 to raise funds for the war effort. These three events did not present full show programs, and the committee of the day decided not to include them in the tally of shows held. Hence, 1941 was our 30th show, with 1946 regarded as our 31st. Incidentally, the surrender of Imperial Japan was announced 15 August 1945 – the second day of our 1945 patriotic show. Our second show to be cancelled was in 2020, due to public health orders relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Past Show Dates

1912: Wednesday 15th May
1913: Wednesday 30th April & Thursday 1st May
1914: Wednesday 29th & Thursday 30th July
1915: Wednesday 25th & Thursday 26th August
1916: Wednesday 19th & Thursday 20th July
1917: Wednesday 5th & Thursday 6th September
1918: Wednesday 21st & Thursday 22nd August
1919: Wednesday 24th & Thursday 25th September
1920: Wednesday 1st & Tuesday 2nd September
1921: Wednesday 14th & Thursday 15th September
1922: Wednesday 6th & Thursday 7th September
1923: Wednesday 29th & Thursday 30th August
1924: Wednesday 27th & Thursday 28th August
1925: Wednesday 19th & Thursday 20th August
1926: Tuesday 17th & Wednesday 18th August
1927: Tuesday 16th & Wednesday 17th August
1928: Tuesday 14th & Wednesday 15th August
1929: Tuesday 13th & Wednesday 14th August
1930: Tuesday 12th & Wednesday 13th August
1931: Tuesday 18th & Wednesday 19th August
1932: Tuesday 16th & Wednesday 17th August
1933: Tuesday 15th & Wednesday 16th August
1934: Tuesday 14th & Wednesday 15th August
1935: Tuesday 13th & Wednesday 14th August
1936: Tuesday 11th & Wednesday 12th August
1937: Tuesday 17th & Wednesday 18th August
1938: Tuesday 16th & Wednesday 17th August
1939: Tuesday 15th & Wednesday 16th August
1940: Tuesday 13th & Wednesday 14th August
1941: Tuesday 12th & Wednesday 13th August
1942: NOT HELD
1943: PATRIOTIC SHOW (Wednesday 11th August)
1944: PATRIOTIC SHOW (Wednesday 16th August)
1945: PATRIOTIC SHOW  (Tuesday 14th & Wednesday 15th August)
1946: Tuesday 13th & Wednesday 14th August
1947: Tuesday 20th & Wednesday 21st May
1948: Tuesday 25th & Wednesday 26th May
1949: Friday 27th & Saturday 28th May
1950: Tuesday 9th & Wednesday 10th May

1951: Tuesday 1st & Wednesday 2nd May
1952: Tuesday 20th & Wednesday 21st May
1953: Tuesday 19th & Wednesday 20th May
1954: Tuesday 4th May & Wednesday 5th May
1955: Monday 16th & Tuesday 17th May
1956: Monday 7th & Tuesday 8th May
1957: Wednesday 15th & Thursday 16th May
1958: Tuesday 6th & Wednesday 7th May
1959: Tuesday 5th & Wednesday 6th May
1960: Monday 23rd & Tuesday 24th May
1961: Tuesday 9th & Wednesday 10th May
1962: Tuesday 8th & Wednesday 9th May
1963: Tuesday 7th & Wednesday 8th May
1964: Tuesday 5th & Wednesday 6th May
1965: Tuesday 11th & Wednesday 12th May
1966: Tuesday 10th & Wednesday 11th May
1967: Friday 5th & Saturday 6th May
1968: Friday 3rd & Saturday 4th May
1969: Tuesday 6th & Wednesday 7th May
1970: Tuesday 28th & Wednesday 29th April
1971: Friday 30th & Saturday 1st May
1972: Friday 21st & Saturday 22nd April
1973: Tuesday 22nd & Wednesday 23rd May
1974: Tuesday 21st & Wednesday 22nd May
1975: Tuesday 29th & Wednesday 30th April
1976: Tuesday 18th & Wednesday 19th May
1977: Tuesday 10th & Wednesday 11th May
1978: Tuesday 25th & Wednesday 26th April
1979: Wednesday 16th & Thursday 17th May
1980: Wednesday 7th & Thursday 8th May
1981: Wednesday 20th & Thursday 21st May
1982: Wednesday 12th & Thursday 13th May
1983: Tuesday 3rd & Wednesday 4th May
1984: Wednesday 16th & Thursday 17th May
1985: Wednesday 8th & Thursday 9th May
1986: Thursday 7th & Thursday 8th May
1987: Monday 18th & Tuesday 19th May
1988: Tuesday 26th & Wednesday 27th April
1989: Tuesday 18th & Wednesday 19th April

1990: Tuesday 8th & Wednesday 9th May
1991: Tuesday 30th April & Wednesday 1st May
1992: Tuesday 19th & Wednesday 20th May
1993: Tuesday 11th & Wednesday 12th May
1994: Tuesday 26th & Wednesday 27th April
1995: Tuesday 9th & Wednesday 10th May
1996: Tuesday 30th April & Wednesday 1st May
1997: Tuesday 29th & Wednesday 30th April
1998: Tuesday 12th & Wednesday 13th May
1999: Tuesday 4th & Wednesday 5th May
2000: Tuesday 23rd & Wednesday 24th May
2001: Tuesday 15th & Wednesday 16th May
2002: Tuesday 30th April & Wednesday 1st May
2003: Tuesday 20th & Wednesday 21st May
2004: Tuesday 11th & Wednesday 12th May
2005: Tuesday 26th & Wednesday 27th April
2006: Tuesday 16th & Wednesday 17th May
2007: Tuesday 8th & Wednesday 9th May
2008: Tuesday 22nd & Wednesday 23rd April
2009: Tuesday 12th & Wednesday 13th May
2010: Tuesday 4th & Wednesday 5th May
2011: Tuesday 24th & Wednesday 25th May
2012: Tuesday 15th & Wednesday 16th May
2013: Tuesday 30th April & Wednesday 1st May
2014: Tuesday 20th & Wednesday 21st May
2015: Tuesday 12th & Wednesday 13th May
2016: Friday 1st & Saturday 2nd April
2017: Friday 5th & Saturday 6th May
2018: Friday 20th & Saturday 21st April
2019: Friday 26th & Saturday 27th April
2020: NOT HELD (Friday 1st & Saturday 2nd May)
2021: Friday 23rd & Saturday 24th April