Another year had gone by and our favourite rally was fast approaching. This rally for us is what we would call an old fashion event, lots of room to steam about and not too many restrictions governing where or what you can and can’t do.
So, on the morning of Friday 9th September the wagon was packed and Victoria was ready to go. We had a good trip over to Heyshott without any major problems. As we arrived in the field it was laid out a bit different to previous years with all the attractions in one field and the ploughing and harvesting in the others.
We got camp set up and the kettle on by about 3pm. After giving Victoria a good clean ready for her weekend ahead we put her cover on and put her to bed. Then time for tea and Kev had his usual bottle of wine. The evening was spent watching other exhibits arrive and letting off a couple of model rockets, one of which hopefully took an aerial view of the site with its camera mounted in the nose cone. Then to bed so we would be up and ready for the weekend ahead.
Saturday morning is always good when you wake up and can just open the top of the wagon door and see what’s going on. The weather was looking good although there had been rumours that there could be a shower or two some when over the weekend. Lloyd and Kev started putting a fire in Victoria’s belly, while I started breakfast for their bellies. The day was generally spent relaxed and doing as much or as little as we liked, we went into the arena in the afternoon and chuffed round the field loads of times.
This year saw the “Wall of Death” there, which seemed a slightly strange thing to have at a harvesting weekend but I actually think it was a great addition with lots of people seemingly enjoying it.
There was a good selection of vehicles, about 50 tractors covering many different makes and models and lots of old bailers and threshing machines which all worked hard over the two days. A small but nice selection of cars, commercials and stationary engines in a line up running machinery such as water pumps and corn mills. As with every year the double LL club attended in force with a variety of different exhibits. The stalls ranged from those where you were able to buy a live chicken to put in your garden to those selling jam.
This year as with every year a choice selection of steam engines were on show. In addition to Victoria there were a portable of 1880 owned by J. Jones of Ripley, the Whittaker family with their 1890 Wallis & Stevens convertible, “The Mistress”, and some model steam engines. On the saw bench were two engines owned by the Bicknell family. The Firefly, a Marshall of 1916, and Hooky the Ransomes Simms & Jeffries of 1920.
As always at a rally Lloyd decided to take Victoria up to the beer tent in the evening so at about 8.30pm off he went with the help of our eldest son Jack, who was steering. There was a bit of disappointment as the band failed to turn up but people didn’t seem to mind too much. There was a couple of impromptu acts, a few jokes were being told and a gentleman singing a very funny song. As the evening wore on the “Wall of Death” guys decided to open the front of their ride and turn on the lights and music. All in all it was a very relaxed friendly evening with everyone talking.
Sunday morning came and again we opened the top of the wagon door to soak up the atmosphere of the day. While Victoria was having her belly filled with fire I was once again preparing the breakfasts. The day was spent with more chuffing around and talking to people.
As the day started to draw to a close there is always a feeling that this is a rally that has a very special something. The atmosphere of this event is fantastic. The team that work so hard to put this show on should be congratulated. The organisers are helpful and friendly, always finding time to stop and chat. This is the rally we look forward to the most, and it never disappoints. We just hope that things don’t change. I don’t think that there is anything that we would change about this weekend even the weather was kind to us this year staying dry both days. Anyone wanting an enjoyable day out should visit and we will see you there next year, already looking forward to it.