Feather friends home in on Blackpool

Pictures:Bill Johnson.'The Royal Pigeon Racing Association British Homing World Show of the Year, at Blackpool's Winter Gardens. Karen Vaughan from  South Wales and her Modena.
Pictures:Bill Johnson.'The Royal Pigeon Racing Association British Homing World Show of the Year, at Blackpool's Winter Gardens. Karen Vaughan from South Wales and her Modena.
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THOUSANDS of pigeons have flocked to Blackpool for The British Homing World Show of the Year.

Pigeon fanciers will be filling the Winter Gardens today to see the best of Britain’s racing and fancy pigeons.

Judging took place last night to find the Supreme Champion and those best in class, to be shown to fanciers at the main event this weekend.

Stewart Wardrop, general manager of the Pigeon Racing Association, said judges had been busy after a day setting up stalls ahead of the tough judging.

He said: “A pigeon is judged on its look, muscle format, it’s plumage, beak, feet or feathers.

“A good pigeon fancier can tell a good pigeon just by holding it.”

The show features talks from organisations and groups related to the animal husbandry. Trade stands allow novice fanciers to buy their first pigeons and instruction manuals on how to get started, or give experienced fanciers chance to top up on bird seed and tips.

Mr Wardrop said: “It’s a real celebration of all things pigeons.”

Organisers expect more than 20,000 people to turn out for the main event to be held this evening, which sees 2,012 racing pigeons and more than 700 fancy pigeons on show.

Mr Wardrop added: “Bearing in mind the weather, it still looks like a lot of fanciers have made the effort.”