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The Birmingham & West Mids Koi Show 2021

Birmingham Koi Show World of Nishikigoi

Apparently koi shows are like buses…

Not that I’m complaining, after all we’ve been deprived of them for so long! Of course, I couldn’t pass up the invitation of attending the Birmingham and West Midlands Koi Show at the weekend, which will mark the last koi show of 2021!

I charged up the camera gear and drove like there was no petrol shortage!

James Millward receives the Grand Champion trophy from Show Chairman Mark Chetter

Lay of the Land

If my memory serves me, this was the very first koi show I ever attended after I’d finally passed my driving test and could do what I pleased, much to my fathers delight. I've been along a handful of times over the years and yes, the cakes were as good as ever!

I think I'm still buzzing from a sugar high inflicted by a rather tasty rocky-road...

Saturday saw some strong down pours, but it wasn't enough to put visitors off, the bonus of an undercover show! The team had done a fantastic job of laying out the space, there were 16 show vats in total, very well arranged with the dealers and trade stands around the edge. Syd Mitchell headed up water management with regular tests and water changes taking place throughout the weekend. There was also a whole separate poly tunnel for those that fancied a sit down natter and a bite to eat, along with great farm produce on site, what more could you want!

This is a closed show, meaning only members of the club were permitted to exhibit their koi. Whilst this inevitably makes for a smaller scale event, there is still plenty to enjoy and we mustn't underestimate the importance of these “small closed shows” - but more on that later.

Birmingham Koi Show 2021 World of Nishikigoi

BKKS Judges in attendance were Allan Tait and Bernie Woollands along with probationary judge Anthony Grey and trainee judge Jasmine Ryan. I know the club were very grateful for their services and also for taking the time to answer questions around the vats. Hat's off to the four of you! Let’s take a look at some koi…

Major Awards

The Birmingham & West Midlands Koi Show - 2021

*Dealer and Breeder info to be added as it comes through to me

Birmingham Koi Show Grand Champion 2021

Grand Champion

Owner: James Millward

Sanke // 70cm // Momotaro // Absolute koi

Birmingham Koi Show Mature Champion 2021

Mature Champion

Owner: Ronald Tyler

Sanke // Sakuma // Shirley Aquatics

Birmingham Koi Show Adult Champion 2021

Adult Champion

Owner: Ronald Tyler

Kohaku // Maruyama // Shirley Aquatics

Birmingham Koi Show Young Champion 2021

Young Champion

Owner: Ronald Tyler

Showa // Sakuma // Shirley Aquatics

Birmingham Koi Show Baby Champion 2021

Baby Champion

Owner: Ronald Tyler

Kohaku // Sakuma // Shirley Aquatics

Birmingham Koi Show Jumbo Champion 2021

Jumbo Champion

Owner: James Millward

Kohaku // 87cm // Takigawa // Yume Koi

Birmingham Koi Show Unique Koi 2021

Most Unique Koi

Owner: Tyler Apperley

Beni Ginga // Ikarashi Ozumi // Aurora Koi

Birmingham Koi Show Best Doitsu 2021

Best Doitsu

Owner: Neil Jackson

Kawarimono // Yagenji // Supreme koi

Beni Kikokuryu - World of Nishikigoi

Show Chairmans Best Vat

Steve Hemmings

More Koi!

Here are all the other 1st place prizes, well done to all of you…

(Enlarge to see more details...)

Variety is the spice of life...

The Birmingham gang also had the Stourbridge Bonsai Society in attendance, in a large poly tunnel all of their own! There were some truly stunning bonsai for sale as well as some jaw dropping trees on exhibition, they were also a really friendly bunch and kindly put up with my barrage of questions. A few of my favourites...

A misty start to Sunday morning...

Trade Support

The show also had trade stands offering fish and dry goods as well as other treats: Peter Shepard, Wakai Trees, Wirez, Finch Filtration, A Class Koi, Draco Drum, Rebecca Chetter Modern Art, Supreme Koi and The Koi Collection were all in attendance supporting the show.

Sponsors were Premier Foods, AquaSource, Kusuri, The Koi Clinic, Bermuda, Nishikoi, DracoDrum, A Class Koi, Aurora Koi and Supreme Koi.

Hikari Koi Food World of Nishikigoi

Wrap up...

For the eagle eyed among you (or those that zoom in!) you will notice that the trophy featured in the picture above was first awarded to the "Best in Show' back in 1977! As it happens, the club is one of the very oldest in the country and over recent years has grown with an influx of new members - but there's always room for more!

Some might argue that in this day and age, with the wealth of information available online, Koi Clubs and their 'small shows' are a bit old hat. The trouble with information is that it's simply dinner party trivia without any experience and understanding to back it up...

With a quick google, I could tell you the name of the farthest star ever seen by a telescope, but does that mean I understand anything about it or its place the universe?

Furthermore, just because information is presented doesn't make it useful, helpful or indeed factual. I'm sure if you added up the costs of mistakes made by hobbyists due to poor information over the past year alone, it would be terrifying. Consider then also the number of hobbyists who decide to throw in the towel due to financial implications, out of sheer frustration or a loss of heart...

You see, Koi Clubs are brimming with both information and experience, not to mention good old fashion encouragement and support! There's really no such thing as an 'expert' in the forever evolving hobby that is koi keeping, so a sensible step is to draw upon collective experience. Any group of hobbyists will have a wealth of koi related experiences, both good, bad and middling and they all form an integral part of the educational process. Hear enough varied points of view and see enough examples and you'll soon be able to make your own educated choices...

Events like this and closed koi shows that happen all over the country really are the life and soul of the hobby. It's where the UK show scene started and for good reason. These shows get intrigued hobbyists confident and hooked on showing, they gain the club much needed exposure and help raise vital funds, also judging by what I saw at the weekend, they are a great way for newbies to get their first contact with 'proper' passionate koi people.

In my view, there's no better way to inspire and enlist new koi keepers!

Keep an eye on the koi calendar and next time there's a closed koi show, pop along and show your support furthermore, spread the word, if one thing has become clear, it's that our koi shows need all the extra support they can get!

Well done to the Birmingham & West Midlands Koi Club and all involved for a cracking weekend!

For more information regarding the Birmingham and West Midlands Koi Club:

For more info on Koi Clubs near you:

More pics, enjoy...


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