The Devon County Show is an annual event in Devon, where, for three days, a set of fields at Westpoint, near Exeter, become a showground and shopping area the size of a fairly impressive town centre. In theory, it’s an agricultural show, but there’s a lot more. There are tractors and traction engines, shops from all around the area, animals of all kinds – farm animals and pets – and a whole lot of food. There’s a fairground, ferret racing, falconry, and arts and crafts.
I went to two days of the 2015 show, once with Sam, and once with my colleagues as part of our Cult Pens 10th Anniversary celebrations. There’s enough to see to make it worth going twice. Entry doesn’t come cheap, but it’s well worth it.
We’ll start with a few of my favourite photos, then have some sets of photos of different parts of the show, including animals, tractors and traction engines, the people, and Titan the Robot.
Before we get to the main galleries, we’ll start with a few of the best photos – if you don’t want to look at them all, just have a look at these. If you like them, there are plenty more further down…
The crowds attending this sort of event are always interesting to photograph, and the Devon County Show is more interesting than most. There’s an amazing variety of people there. Some are there dressed up in their finest, walking around the show along with people dressed in scruffy workwear, and others in sports or streetwear. It would be almost impossible to look out of place at the show. As ever, I was on the lookout for awesome hair, and there was plenty on show.
There’s only a relatively small car show section at the County show – Mid Devon has (or had, last time we went) more – but it’s still a good chance for a few photos.
Tractors and Traction Engines
At heart, the Devon County Show is an agricultural show, so there are plenty of tractors there. Unlike other shows we’ve been to, there were quite a lot of traction engines, too. My favourite of all these shots is the panograph I made of The Masterpiece. I used my Leica Elmar 135mm to take lots of photos, then stitched together around 50 shots using Affinity Photo:
Lots of the engines were running, and driving around a central field, with engines on show all the way around.
Owls, a display of falconry, and llamas and alpacas.
Titan the Robot
Titan was around, doing little shows around the grounds. A huge, tall robot, carried from place to place on a kind of small car/transporter/carrier thing. He does comedy routines to the crowd.
He saw me photographing him, and got rather close.
A few shots that don’t fit in anywhere above. Ferret Racing and Duck Handling events being proudly declared kind of set the tone for the whole thing – it’s a show with a strangely enjoyable rural charm, while also being a huge and very professionally run event.