Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Steam's the winner at rally

HEAVY showers lost the battle for supremacy over steam at this year’s Woodcote Rally held at

HEAVY showers lost the battle for supremacy over steam at this year’s Woodcote Rally held at the weekend.

More than 15,000 people attended the event last Saturday and Sunday and organisers are hoping to match the £25,000 they raised in 2014.

Since it was first held in 1964 the rally has given away more than £425,000 to charities and other good causes in the Woodcote area.

There were about 600 exhibitors in categories including steam engines, tractors, military vehicles and vintage and classic cars. Each class paraded separately around the main ring.

For the first time this year, two pairs of Shire horses gave a demonstration. One pulled a traditional decorated wooden cart while the other towed a three-tonne steam-powered fire engine manufactured in the early part of the 20th century.

At the end of the show the vehicle discharged its 1,000-gallon tank into the centre of the arena.

There were falconry displays and performances by silver and brass bands as well as local rock group Blues Wreckers, who played on the Saturday night.

About 40 trade stands were manned with a further 40 exhibitors in the craft and country tent. Children enjoyed a Punch and Judy show, a bouncy castle and quad bike rides, as well as a funfair.

Organiser Andy Crockett said: “It’s been another successful year. Everyone really enjoyed themselves and the stall holders said it was their best year ever because they were much closer to the main ring.

“The Shire horses were particularly spectacular — they were going round the arena in all directions and at the end they did a slalom, which everyone was very impressed with.”

“It was a bit disappointing that it rained on the Sunday. Fortunately lots of people turned up despite the forecasts. There was a shower at about 2pm and they all ran for shelter but were happy to stay when it cleared up.”

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