We had planned to take Victoria to the Bill Targett rally this year but due to technical difficulties we were unable to attend so, putting our disappointment to one side, we had to make do with visiting on the Saturday. The event was held on the 19th and 20th of May which was a week later than usual but the turn out was better then ever. The programme listed 42 steam entries but there were actually 37 machines on parade, these however, were a good cross section of type and make. Of particular interest were two Babcock and Wilcox rollers with consecutive makers numbers and registrations, both being new to the well known Somerset rolling contractor W.W.Buncombe. Other steam exhibits included the Burrell showman’s ‘Earl Beatty’ and a rather smart Foster tractor which was new to the area.
All classes were well supported with a large selections of cars, stationary engines and other vehicles giving a great deal for the visitors to look at. While we were there on Saturday the railway locomotive ‘Lord Nelson’ passed with a special on its way from London to Weymouth which was an added bonus to the steam section, it is not every rally that can boast a mainline express engines appearance!
This event continues to grow and the only criticism that we heard from the exhibitors was that the steamers were too packed together, each year there are more engines but the space allocated to them remains the same, perhaps this minor problem will be addressed for next years event, otherwise congratulations again to the Eastleigh Vintage Machinery Preservation Society for another success.