History of Emley Show

The Emley Show society exists to promote agricultural interests and raise funds to support local enterprises and individuals who meet the criteria of our constitution. At the same time, we hope we are providing an enjoyable family day out for the wider community. This statement is as true today as it was when the Society was first formed. Emley has held a show every year since 1893, give or take a few years when events beyond the committees control, forced closure, war, Foot & Mouth Disease , bad weather and more recently a worldwide pandemic. 2022 saw a return of the show and was a great success making it the 103rd. The show returns for it 104th year on Saturday 5th August 2023

Over the years, the Show has been held on several different sites around the village. To accommodate its expansion in 2008, the site moved to its current location Factory Farm on Emley Moor, close to the Arqiva Tower, the postcode is HD8 9TE. The Show is held at Factory Farm by kind permission of the Hampshire Family.

History of Emley and Emley Moor

Emley is a village in West Yorkshire between Huddersfield and Wakefield. In the Doomsday Book of 1086, it was listed as Ameleie and dates back to Anglo-Saxon times. As well as Emley Show, Emley is also famous for “The Mast”, formally known as the Emley Moor TV Transmitter which stands at 1047ft, Emley Football Club and the Emley Boundary Walk.

The Emley Moor TV transmitter is a grade II listed concrete tower and has loomed large over the horizon helping to beam television shows into homes for decades. It is the tallest freestanding structure in the UK and 24th tallest (June 2021) in the world at over 1000ft high. The tower is officially known as the “The Arqiva Tower, named after the company which currently owns it. The current concrete structure was completed in 1971 after the original Emley Moor TV transmitter was brought down by strong winds and a build up of ice in 1969. The tower can be seen for miles and Arqiva kindly allowed it to be lit up by purple lights in September 2022 as a mark of respect following the death of Queen Elizabeth II. Emley Moor broke another record in July 2022 by recording the hottest night time temperature every recorded in the UK at 25.9.

The Emley Boundary Walk is a traditional event that began in 1857 and happens every 7 years, and involves a walk of approximately 13 miles around the boundary of Emley. As the scheduled walk was due to take place in 2021 it was postponed due to Covid and was rescheduled for 2022, a brilliant turn out and a triumphant but weary group were welcomed back in to the Village heralded by Emley Brass Band

Emley is also home to AFC Emley – an non-league footbball club that made national headlines when they progressed to the 3rd round of the FA Cup, beating Morecambe and Lincoln City on route. The team moved to Wakefield in 2000 and became Wakefield & Emley FC, but returned as AFC Emley in 2005 to the village’s Welfare Ground.

Emley may only be a relatively small village but our Show is acknowledged as an important event in the Show Calendar. Our site on Emley Moor, is acclaimed for the magnificent panoramic views of the Pennines. These particular views can only be accessed, on Show Day.


Drone photographs by Gerry Slade