Crop plots for this year’s Cereals Event are growing well at the Thoresby Estate, with the event set to take place at the brand new Nottinghamshire site for the first time next year.

Exhibitors gathered at the new Cereals Event site at the end of last month to examine their crop plots and discuss plans for the event. Despite torrential rain, organisers said the the new location looked a picture, with the 60ha site protected by trees on the edge of Sherwood Forest.

“Everything about the new site is positive,” says arable project manager Jonathan Backhouse. “It’s easily accessible, very picturesque and has great facilities. The easy-working sandland makes for straightforward crop establishment and a free-draining show site.

“However, the flip-side of this means we could find ourselves watering regularly if we see drought-like conditions again next spring – fortunately Thoresby has excellent infrastructure in place for irrigation.”

New year, new host

Hosting the Cereals Event for the first time in 2023, the Thoresby Estate has been in the Pierrepont family since the 1590s. It comprises 4860ha, of which 3400ha is farmed in-hand. The rest is a mixture of commercial forestry, natural forest and let farms. “We have a rotation of wheat, barley, maize, oilseed rape, beans, potatoes, carrots, onions and sugar beet,” explains landowner Gregor Pierrepont. There are also 120 Longhorn cows plus followers, 250 Hebridean and Greyface Dartmoor sheep and 1100 Mule crosses.

“Having it here is a chance to give it a refresh on a new site and broaden the mix of attendees for whom the previous sites were less accessible,” he says. The facilities at Thoresby are also excellent, with camping, holiday cottages, a hotel, riding hall and walled garden for ancillary events.

As in 2022, Cereals is donating 50% of the ticket sales to charity – and the 2023 recipient, the Multiple System Atrophy Trust, was chosen by the hosting family. “It’s very close to our hearts as it was set up by my aunt Sarah, who was afflicted by this very rare disease,” says Gregor. The charity will be holding a special fundraiser at the event.

Crop plots

The crop plot area is larger than last year, with both returning and new exhibitors. Will Davies, agronomist at Ceres Rural, is overseeing many of the plots, and is pleased with how well they have grown away this autumn.

“Cereals is a good opportunity to see all of the varieties in one place and grown under the same conditions. You get an idea of what they look like under real conditions, not just reading statistics from the Recommended List.”

Crop plot exhibitors lined up so far include:

  • KWS
  • DSV
  • Natural England
  • LSPB
  • PGRO
  • Optiyield
  • Rothamsted Research
  • Premium Crops
  • Bionature UK
  • AminoA
  • Syngenta

The Cereals Event will be held near Newark, Nottinghamshire, on 13-14 June 2023. For more information visit