The National Cat Club Show 2007

The National Cat Club is having it's annual show at Olympia, London today 8th December. As I live about 3 miles away in Barnes I'm going with the camera.

Barnes is just over the river Thames from the Fulham area where the Olympia exhibition halls are situated.

The National Cat Club is the oldest in world so they claim and it can be believed as it was founded in 1887. The club was the Governing Body of the Cat Fancy until 1910 when the GCCF took over.

If you read about cat shows it seems to me that all the early major shows were held at Crystal Palace. The first as far as I am aware was held there in 1871 and this was the National Cat Club Show.

When researching the history of cat breeds Crystal Palace comes up time and again. I am currently working on the Abyssinian Cat. This breed was imported into England in about 1874 from Abyssinia by a soldier, who it is presumed was in Abyssinia (now Ethiopia) as part of the military forces there in the lead up to the Abyssinian-Egyptian war of the 1870s.

The Abyssinian was first registered worldwide in England by the National Cat Club in 1896 apparently. The cats were called Sedgemere Bottle and Sedgemere Peaty.

The Crystal Palace fire is well known. The Crystal Palace was a well known large glass and iron building built for the Great Exhibition of 1851 in London's Hyde Park. It was moved and rebuilt at, what is called now, Crystal Palace Park in 1854. This was the world's first theme park.

The Palace was a very impressive structure. Perhaps too big to be financially viable at the time. There was a fire in 1866 and another in 1936 when the entire structure was it seems destroyed. The National Cat Club Show had to be moved and it has found a home at Olympia having moved around over the years to various London venues.

This is where I am going to in about 3 hours. I'll report back. Finally, the club must be commended for existing for so long.

Photograph reproduced under creative commons ian-n flickr, after an exhibition at Olympia


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