To be honest it was touch and go as to whether we went this year due to the continuing erratic weather that we have been having.
Given the nature of the show – with much of what goes on being outside, it really is very much at the mercy of the weather and although I have no idea of how the attendance panned out but I suspect a few folk will have been put off making the effort.
The show ran on Saturday and Sunday and we decided that we would go on the Saturday as the weather looked like it would be half decent, at least until early afternoon and we decided to get there pretty much for the opening time.
Although there was plenty of car parking, unlike last year it wasn’t free, which I thnk it was last year. Although the modest £3.00 cost per car cant really be complained at.
We went to the show with my nephew and met by daughter, son in law and three small grandchildren there, and set off for the short walk from the car parking area to the festival entrance.
In many respects the show was pretty much like last years, similar displays and stalls etc although this years special guest was the legendary, multiple TT winner John McGuinness. Like last year there were stunt bikes displays, BMX displays, a fine selection of old bikes in the main (covered) pavilion area.
There was also a small fairground area for young children, although not all the rides were open within the first hour or so of the show.
On Sunday there was due to be a fly past by a Spitfire and Hurricane from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, but as we were there on the Saturday, I don’t know if the fly past took place as clearly it was weather dependent.
There was the usual range of food stalls that you would expect at a show like this and even though we were there early they all seemed to be dong good business, we managed to resist the calorie laden temptation of the burgers and sausages although the smell was almost irresistible!
The guy (Graham Hardy) who does the George Shuttleworth Speed Demon display was there again and greeted us with that classic George Formby line “turned out nice again” the children stopped to have pictures with him – he really is a nice bloke and they enjoyed having pictures with him.
With the sky darkening and an obvious downpour on the way, we pretty much decided to call it quits after a couple if hours wandering around and started to head back to the cars – but not before stopping for ice cream for the children who were pretty much oblivious to the rain.
Our plans for a picnic by the canal were washed away with an extraordinary downpour and storm (we made do by eating our picnic in the cars) – and I really felt for those with the outdoor displays as well as those arriving by bike who had probably been enjoying a good ride on the fabulous roads in the area and then almost out of nowhere will have found themselves not only drenched but in road conditions that would have bordered on the unsafe for 15 to 20 minutes.
Ducatti and Triumph were there displaying a reasonable number of models from their respective ranges
If I’m honest I don’t think I quite enjoyed our visit as much as last year – but that was largely down to the weather which was a real contrast to last year, and despite that I never get bored with wandering around looking at bikes, so although not quite the enjoyable experience as last year I expect we will be back in Llangollen in 2018 (August 4th and 5th).
All in all despite the poor weather spoiling things a little for us at £10 per adult and free entry for children it really is good value – for those that are staying late or camping overnight I gather there were bands, fire eating, stilt walking etc later on.
I also thing we missed a few things such as well, due to the combination of poor weather and having our small grandchildren with us – and you can see the full list of what was on at this link
On a minor note and something that the organisers could do to review and make improvements on for next year was the payment process when paying by card – it really was pretty slow and cumbersome and involved the folk on the entrance section using their own mobile ‘phones to make a connection with the card payment machine – it wasn’t a big deal for us as we were there early but it wont have added anything to those who were arriving later and will probably have had to que a little longer than they might reasonably have expected.
There are more pictures posted below and clicking on any should open a scrolable gallery.