Miscanthus was the word on everyone’s lips at the Royal Bath and West Show last week. Dozens of bales of the elephant-grass chips usually used as biofuel were delivered to counter the effects of the flash flood that drenched the showground on the Thursday evening.

The organisers’ marquee looked like the disappearing ballroom on Titanic and rivers appeared in the shopping avenues. Yet the Dunkirk spirit prevailed. The president of the show and her dinner guests joined the stockmen at their disco as all the catering outlets consolidated froces in the Westex Suite. Meanwhile, trade-stand holders and officials dumped the liquid hungry matter in the worst-affected areas with the cry ‘the show must go on’.