The All England Koi Show 2021
The 25th/26th of September sees the long awaited return of The All England Koi Show after a Covid19 hiatus...
- That's right folks it's happening and you DO NOT want to miss out!
The South East Section was initially conceived back in 1981 and officially kicked off in '82 after receiving Section status from the BKKS. Great things start as little ideas and since opening its doors, the Section has grown from strength to strength. Their first open koi show was held in '84, the second in '88 and has been held annually ever since, growing and evolving into what is now the largest indoor koi show in the UK...
Yes you heard me - it's indoors!
In 2019 over 340 koi were exhibited, that's a lot of koi by any standards and this year is looking very promising indeed! The Venue has a total of 4600sq mtrs of carpeted floor space spanning two interconnected halls, every inch dedicated to the koi show!
Here are the awards that the exhibitors will be competing for. The first column indicating 'rounds' and therefore the order in which the prizes are judged on the day.
Some may notice that the awards structure is slightly different to what was seen at the recent BKKS National Koi Show. This isn't to confuse anyone, but simply because the South East Section isn't a member of the BKKS and so they've made their own adjustments, based on data gathered over the years, regarding what structure best suits their exhibitors.
For example, there's a "Best Non Gosanke" award in place of "Grand Champion B," and in this instance, the Best Non Gosanke could also take Grand Champion... how you ask? Well, Bernie Woollands informs me that because the GC title is awarded to the best fish in show (irrespective of size and class) if that koi happens to be a non gosanke, then by default that koi would also win the title of Best Non Gosanke, quite sensible really. This particular scenario has not happened just yet, but The All England have had non gosanke win GC in years gone by (before this award was introduced), so watch this space...
There is also a "Superior Champion" award, which I know usually causes some confusion as the word "superior" sounds rather like it's looking down upon "grand" from a dizzying height. As we've established 'GC' is awarded to the best fish in show but 'SC' is awarded to the best koi from size 7 (75cm+). Bernie also informed me that this award was introduced in 2012 (after some very careful consideration) because the quality of the size 7's present at the show were over shadowing the wonderful size 6's also being exhibited. The size 6 koi would therefore struggle to win awards such as Mature Champion because of such fierce competition but the 'Superior Champion,' offered a great solution to even out the playing field of an ever growing koi show.
For those that like unusual koi, this year has TWO special varieties...
If you have never attended the show before, here are some major winners from 2016 - and as you can see, this show attracts serious koi!
Of course it's not just about the koi on display
Koi shows are a wonderful place to check out dealers and relevant stands from all branches of the industry and hobby, The All England show ground is no stranger to packed out stand space with bargains a-plenty... so who's in attendance?
Please click the image to enlarge:
The Section has been going strong since '82, they've been relentlessly giving us koi shows since '84 and try as Covid may, the team are determined to deliver a great event. The All England Koi Show offers hobbyists a chance to see some of the finest koi in the country competing 'fin to fin' (not sure if that works, but I'll run with it...). There's a horde of dealers and trade stands offering everything from superb quality koi to Japanese pines and artwork, you'll be able to natter to fellow koi enthusiasts and professionals from all over the country, there's a great selection of hot and cold food available, free parking and a licensed bar... and considering the success of this years 'National,' The All England really won't be one to miss!
So rock up and support the show!
As Jagger once said...
"Wild horses couldn't drag me away..."
More Info about The South East Section:
*Thanks to Bernie Woodlands for helping me with show info and club history.