Plenty to do at the Honiton Hill Rally

PUBLISHED: 17:30 15 August 2019

Honiton Hill Rally 2018.

Honiton Hill Rally 2018.


It began in 1971 as a chance for fans of vintage farm machinery to ‘play with their toys’, and has developed into a hugely popular annual two-day event.

Ref mhh 35 17TI 0262. Picture: Terry IfeRef mhh 35 17TI 0262. Picture: Terry Ife

The Honiton Hill Rally now features a range of vehicles including steam engines, tractors, cars, military vehicles, fire appliances and motorcycles. There are also horses, displays of traditional farming techniques and rural skills, an arts and crafts marquee, and a host of other entertainment including a fairground, and children's activities. It is a carnival of country life.

This year it takes place on Sunday, August 25 and Bank Holiday Monday, August 26, at Smeatharpe Airfield.

The event is unusual in that, far from being a display of stationary vehicles, it is a chance to see vintage machines in action. There are working demonstrations of corn cutting, ploughing, baling, threshing, combining and sawing wood. In the working rings there will be the chance to see corn being threshed, and a reed comber using a trusser for bundling up reed for thatching.

Tractor exhibitors demonstrate ploughing and other agricultural techniques, and are happy to talk about how the old machines work and how they compare to present-day farming equipment.

Ref mhh 35 17TI 0261. Picture: Terry IfeRef mhh 35 17TI 0261. Picture: Terry Ife

This year also features lawn mower racing and tractor pulling.

On the Monday, there is the annual auction of vintage and newer vehicles, parts and accessories, run by Kivells Auctioneers. This is always very popular and attracts around 2,000 lots.

Wayne Summers, vice-chairman of Honiton Hill Rally, said:

"Every year the rally gets bigger and better, with a real buzz and a great atmosphere.

Honiton Hill Rally. Picture: Terry IfeHoniton Hill Rally. Picture: Terry Ife

"We've been holding it at Smeatharpe Airfield for the last few years, and its concrete runways are ideal for enabling the vehicles to be driven around and shown off to the public.

"We look forward to welcoming thousands of visitors, from the local area and much further afield."

Admission is £10 for adults, and children under 16 go in for nothing when accompanied by a paying adult. Open from 9am until 5pm both days. For further information visit or call 07929 534 277.

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