27 August, 2008

Rudgwick Steam and Country Show 2008

So, much relaxed by four days sat in a (not too rainy/muddy) field in West Sussex, we got there really early on Friday morning thanks to a herculean effort on the part of Flyingpops (last Thursday night) to get the show shopping done and drop off our faulty laptop to laptop hospital so we didn't have to wait until after opening time to set off...we stopped only briefly to fill up Colin the Camper with unleaded and grab a few newspapers...found the site very easily (with thanks to the Tomtom) driving past (what we discovered later was) Jim Davidson's mansion on the way, very impressive...had a bit of a mad scramble to find our paper work and then we were in, found our spot (right inbetween Flyingpops' folks and Grandad)...set up took about 2 hours, then all we had to do was relax -
Arrived at Rudgwick
- it's nice to be on site so early, wandering round you can watch everyone else setting up -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #3
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #11
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #12
- and enjoy the calm before the storm...
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #14
It's an interesting show, this one...usually all the various categories of exhibits are grouped together, here things are really shaken up, there are three fields and each of them contain a number of each of the sorts of attractions, so a little bit of steam, a few vehicles and a few displays, only the shops, crafts and fun fair being traditionally grouped, and while this meant that it was a trek to find the people you normally camp near it did keep things interesting for visitors (not just being faced with, say, just a great big field full of tractors, for example)...it is also the only show I have ever been to that has a public footpath running right through the middle of it(!) -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #5
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #128
- meaning at any point (had there not been hoards of Sea Cadet guards lining it constantly) anyone could have just wandered in and hopped over a stile into the show without paying their £7 entry fee...

It's a fairly small site (comparitively), not being on anything like the scale of Ardingly or Laughton, but I think this works in it's favour as it feels incredibly busy, you literally can't stop finding interesting things to look at, hoards of animals (which you rarely see at any of these shows, being more the preserve of the agricultural circuit) -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #66
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #46
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #78
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #67
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #68
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #48
- Longbow archery -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #84
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #87
- remote controlled boats (the poor guys took all their boats to Ardingly earlier in the year and had no pond to play in)!
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #93
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #92
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #91
A (rather noisy) twice-daily Wild West show -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #52
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #56
- which taught me a number of useful tricks, like remembering not to try drawing on anyone already pointing a gun at me (despite what I had seen in the movies), and never ever to turn my back on a prone enemy (even if I had already shot them) as they might not *quite* be dead...

Plenty of stalls in the shopping area selling all sorts of things -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #43
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #39
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #37
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #36
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #34
- as well as offering you the chance to smash things up -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #42
- then enjoy a drink in the huge beer tent (a reasonable selection of real ales) -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #31
- listening to the (seemingly never-ending) selection of double entendre laden songs on offer by the "New Forest Plonkers"...
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #30
A magic show/Punch and Judy -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #32
Displays of ploughing (both ancient and modern) -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #65
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #82
...and using steam to slice up logs -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #142
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #143
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #141
- not to mention the fun fair -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #95
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #100
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #108
- and even a drag racing bike from Santa Pod (oddly combining two of our hobbies)!
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #89
...and all completed with the minimum of mud -
Rudgwick Steam & Country Show #158
A really good weekend...even when the rain threatened the car park still filled completely up and we had a constant stream of visitors...so I think we'll be back again next year...only downside was no commemorative plaque for attending to add to our board...oh well, we'll live..! ;)

2 comments:

Sarah said...

Ah it was a lovely show, if a little *random* at times! :-)

Tom Hopwood said...

Looks like you have a great time at these shows mate. Certainly is a lot see and do.