Sunday, 12 July 2009

Woodcote Steam Rally

It is few years since I was able to make it to the annual rally. Every year, hundreds of enthusiasts with their refurbished engines and vehicles do the rounds of various rallies around the country. Many of the steam traction engines have been rescued from scrap and restored to their former glory. As well as these engines, there are cars, motorcycles, lorries, buses, all sorts of vehicles from the dawn of transportation to more recent models. Most important, the beer tent. This is run by CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, a group of volunteers who formed in the 1970s as a reaction against the bland fizziness of the kind of antiseptic cheap coloured water that was gradually replacing real English beer in pubs throughout Britain. Due to their dedication and hard work, real ale is now a widespread phenomenon and at events like this we can enjoy some classic beers. I was there at the end of the event, so only got to sample a few beers, all of which were brilliant:
  • Rebellion Brewery: Mutiny
  • White Horse Brewery: Oxfordshire Bitter
  • Loddon Brewery: Flight of Fancy
  • Appleford Brewery Co: Power Station
By the time they were closing the beer tent, there was almost nothing left. They judged the quantities well. As always, a great day out with the wonderful smells of oil, coal and steam in the hot summer sunshine. A very happy bunch, these old vehicle enthusiasts.

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Reading, Berkshire, United Kingdom

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