Huge crowds attend first day of National Ploughing Championships in Co Offaly

Around 300,000 people are expected to travel to Screggan over the coming days

Huge crowds attend first day of National Ploughing Championships in Co Offaly

Image: RollingNews.ie

The first day of the National Ploughing Championships is coming to a close.

President Michael D Higgins officially launched the event in Screggan this morning.

President Higgins said: "The Ploughing Championships are an enduring testimony to this vibrancy of our farming sector. They are also, of course, a great showcase of the skill and ability of those who work the land."

This year marks the 85th championship, and around 300,000 people are expected to attend over the next three days.

Around 350 competitors will be taking part in the championships themselves.

Other events include tractor football, pigs running obstacle courses and sheepdog trials. 

Image: RollingNews.ie

Screggan is also hosting hundreds of exhibitors for the agricultural trade show.

The championships are the highlight of the farming calendar - and these people explained why they love it.

Inspector John Lawless, is appealing to motorists attending the ploughing championships to be patient when leaving the site today and during the week.

"Bear in mind that very large crowds attend these events [...] so it's going to take time to get home," he added.