The Duke of Devonshire officially opened the new Bakewell Show office this week and declared that ‘the chicken shed was dead – long live Janet’s Palace’.
The ‘chicken shed’ was a wooden building erected more than 60 years ago as a temporary measure for the show’s headquarters.
‘Janet’s Palace’ – informally named after the show’s manager Janet Bailey – is the new £369,000 timber-framed office which reflects Bakewell’s reputation as the most environmentally-friendly show in the UK.
Representatives of the contractors, Bakewell-based Pinelog, were joined by show staff, volunteers, and fundraisers for the opening ceremony, which Joint Show Director Brian Bakel said was ‘a most historic occasion’.
“I’ve been involved in Bakewell Show for 50 years next year and I cannot think of any occasion to overshadow this,” he said.
“We look forward to bringing you Bakewell Show and other events from here.”
The Duke, President of the Show two years ago, paid tribute to the hard work of the staff, who, he said, deserved something better than the shabby old wooden building they had been working in.
He added that the office was a remarkable achievement for Pinelog.
After cutting the ribbon, the Duke was presented with a special gift – a gingerbread version of the new show office created by Brian Bunce, former landlord of the Druid Inn at Birchover.