Woodcote Rally

Shortly after arriving, the main arena came to life with a parade of shiny colourful growling tractors being driven in one by one by their proud owners. Wayne had found a good spot to position us at the entrance to the arena where we could see everything driving past. There were a lot of tractors to admire as they slowly made their way in to the arena. At the end of this section it was a suitable point to go and have some lunch as the next event did not take place for a while.

I found a table in front of a stage on a lorry which was getting ready to provide music for the day. The first group to take to the stage was a group of young local drummers. This was very loud and. Wayne went off to get a burger from a van which we had seen earlier and came back with a very nice cheese burger and drink. Which I enjoyed while listening to an Ed Sheeran cover.

After we had eaten and enjoyed a bit more music we went back to the arena for a bird of prey display. The bird handler did a demonstration with an owl and tried to get the public to guess how far their heads could turn around before telling us that they can actually turn completely around. Then he demonstrated flying the owl with some volunteers. After that he got one of his newest birds out to demonstrate flying. It managed to confuse him as well as the crowd as it flew higher and higher and just wouldn’t come down. By now the hot weather had affected the vintage car owners who were already lined up for their turn in the arena space and were getting hot and bothered. Eventually after one last attempt they had to carry on with the rest of the program.

Every car was then driven forward while the commentators told you about them. The first two cars must of thought it was a race though because they shot out from where they had been queued pretty quickly. Then it was time for the main parade with all the assembled steam engines. These chuffed and tooted with their proud owners riding on the footplate. Then it was time for them to show off by racing across the field weaving between cones. They then all lined up and the spectators could go in and take photographs. Then they all gave one long whistle before leaving the arena.

To seek a bit of shade from the very hot and blistering sun we went to where a local brass band were playing and stopped to listen some more music while we cooled down. Before we came home there was a small parade of commercial vehicles which we watched. There was also an area of stalls selling various items and a fun fair. There are pictures of the day in the gallery.

Finally, I can report that the bird of prey did eventually return to its owner some three hours later.

Although the rally is in a field the steam engines had flattened it so that it was not too difficult for Wayne to push me about but it was a bit bumpy at times. Tickets were £10 on the gate.