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Whatever the weather it’s full speed ahead for Weeting Steam Rally

12:10 19 July 2012

The tractor parade at the Weeting Steam Rally and Country Show in 2010.

The tractor parade at the Weeting Steam Rally and Country Show in 2010.

©Archant Photographic 2010

From traditional steam engines to vintage tractors and farmyard machines, Weeting Steam Rally has always been a nostalgic draw for rural enthusiasts from across the country – and this year promises to be no different.

The country fair, which began in 1968, has gone from strength to strength and thousands are expected to pass through the gates, which open tomorrow (Friday).

Organisers have stressed the weather will not put a damper on proceedings, emphasising the event, which will run until Sunday, will go ahead regardless of the weather.

Rally co-ordinator Wendy Young, said the ground was holding well and exhibitors and equipment were arriving early to make sure everything was ready on time.

“The ground is good and we’re going ahead as planned – a lot of people travel to see us and I’ve had calls from Scotland from people wondering if it’s worth making the journey,” she added. “Things have started to arrive and everything is on track.”

Highlights this year across the 170-acre showground will include heavy horse displays in the main ring, steam traction engine and steam lorry parades, fire engines, steam-powered farmyard machines, a full-size train on rails, a model steam train to take passengers around a track and small steam models including boats on a pond.

There will also be static displays of vintage cars, motorbikes and military vehicles.

“If people take the time to have a good walk around, they’ll find all sorts of different things,” Ms Young added. “It’s really a look back at how things used to be done, but we’ve got modern as well as vintage vehicles so it’s from the modern to how things used to be done. It’s a good atmosphere and we have a lot of people who are have been here for a lot of years so they know what they are doing.”

In past years demonstrations have included steam ploughing, steam threshing, a steam powered sawmill, stone crushing and farmyard implements of a bygone era, as well as ploughing and cultivating demonstrations using vintage tractors and horses.

The Snakewood Dog Agility Team are also regular demonstrators.

The Community Tent will house a number of museums and organisations with displays and interactive activities, and there will also be trade and craft stalls.

Helicopter flights have proved to be popular way to get a bird’s eye view of the whole show and the surrounding area, while youngsters can enjoy fairground rides as well as new rides, bouncy castles and mini quad bikes.

A wedding blessing is also expected to attract crowds on Saturday when Angela Wren and Paul ‘Footy’ Coupland take to the main ring following the grand parade of steam engines.

The couple, who married in Thetford on Tuesday, will walk through an archway of engines at 4pm surrounded by family and friends.

• The Weeting Steam Rally and Country Show will be held from tomorrow July 20 until Sunday July 22at Fengate Farm, Weeting.

Opening times will be from 10am to 11pm tomorrowJuly20, 10am to 11pm on SaturdayJuly21 and 10am to 5pm on SundayJuly22

Admission: adults (16+), £6 tomorrow, £8 Saturday and £8 Sunday; children, £2 tomorrow, £4 Saturday and £4 Sunday; OAP/disabled, £5 tomorrow, £7 Saturday and £7 Sunday; and children under 12 can attend for free on all days.

Car parking is free all weekend.

Free transport in the form of specially-built trailers will be on hand to get people around the site. These will lower to the ground for easy access for the elderly and disabled, with seating and safety rails and an area for wheelchairs.

The trailers will be towed by tractors and will drive around the show on a specified route.

A camping and caravan site is also available for those who wish to stay for the whole weekend.

For more information contact organisers on 01842 810317 or visit www.weetingrally.co.uk

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