Blog post from Wednesday, 1 April, 2015

The Royal Easter Show is held in Sydney every year for two weeks around Easter.

The first Easter Show was held in 1823 by the newly formed Agricultural Society of New South Wales, with the aim of encouraging the colony’s rural industries. The site was at Parramatta, and the display included horses, cattle, sheep, pigs and poultry.

In 1869, the venue was moved to Prince Alfred Park until 1881 when the Government of New South Wales provided land for the Royal Agricultural Society at Moore Park where the show was held for 116 years. In 1998, the Show moved to a new showground in Sydney Olympic Park at Homebush Bay.

The Show has been held every year since 1869 except during the severe outbreak of the Spanish flu in 1919 and between the years of 1942 and 1946 when it was interrupted by World War II. Traditionally, the Show began on the Friday before Easter, was closed on Sundays and Good Friday and packed up the Tuesday following Easter, the Tuesday being “Children’s Day” when goods such as showbags were reduced in price. It is now open every day during the two weeks and starts on the Thursday.

The State Library of New South Wales has a collection of medals awarded, including these from 1832 and 1871.