Farmers have been challenged to get involved with celebrations to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Nelson’s victory at Trafalgar over the weekend of Oct 21-23.
The idea is that beacons will be lit across the land, church bells will ring, and festivities will take place on farms, in homes, hotels, pubs, schools, and villages and towns.
Members of the Royal Family – including HM The Queen – are to play a leading role in the celebrations by lighting beacons across the country – one after another -on the evening of Trafalgar Day (21 Oct).
Farming organisations including the NFU, Women’s Food and Farming Union, Young Farmers Club, Country Land and Business Association, Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution and Farmers Union of Wales are all supporting the event.
They have welcomed the fact that the nation is being urged to support local farmers and growers, by celebrating with local produce and regional specialities, providing a “true taste of Britain”.
The Trafalgar Weekend challenge, with a £500 prize to hold a black-tie dinner party in a unique location, has already been taken up by WFU president Gillian van der Meer.
She plans to host a black- tie dinner party entitled ”From The Glasses to the Stars” at a location in the Hastings area, the oldest of the Cinque Ports.
Mrs van der Meer said: “Trafalgar Day is a wonderful once in a lifetime occasion to engage the whole nation in celebrating both Nelson’s victory and British food and farming.
“I therefore want to issue a challenge to every woman in farming in this country to support The Trafalgar Weekend by gathering their family and friends together to light large bonfires on their farm as part of the national chain at 7.15pm on Friday October 21st.
“They can celebrate with a great British supper of ‘Bangers and Mash’ to show our thanks to the organisers of the weekend and the British public for recognising the vital role the farmers of yesterday and today have played and will continue to play, in providing the nation with some of the best food in the world.”
Three charities will benefit from the weekend – the RABI, SRABI, and Seafarers UK.
Bruno Peek chairman of The Trafalgar Weekend, said: “We would also like the nation to start off the celebrations on the morning of 21 Oct with a Great British Breakfast.
“Nelson saved our bacon at Trafalgar and what better way to salute him than starting your day the British way. We want local produce to be the focal point of a Trafalgar Weekend celebration meal.
“Produce from the farms, dairies, fields, hills and orchards of 200 years ago would have provisioned Nelson and his men in the days before Trafalgar.”
The organisers of the weekend are recording details of every event being held, whether it is a bonfire, bangers and mash party, or other celebration.
Please register your event by sending an email to, firstname.lastname@example.org confirming in the email the following details.
A) Name, address telephone and POST CODE of the farm and organiser.
B) Confirm you are lighting a bonfire at 7-15pm on 21st October.
C) Confirm you will be having a bangers and mash evening with family and friends.
The organisers of the weekend have confirmed that they will not publish details of individual events to ensure security.