Fes­ti­val is still pow­ered by steam

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - OPINION - by Mike Ben­nett

THE show went on but the cold and damp weather pro­vided the worst ever con­di­tions for the an­nual three-day Sellindge Steam Spe­cial over the week­end.

Over 37 years, the event started by vet­eran en­thu­si­asts Les and Ber­nice Birch and their fam­ily in the vil­lage, has de­vel­oped into one of the big­gest coun­try­side fes­ti­vals in the South East.

It at­tracts thou­sands and has raised more than £100,000 for char­ity, but this year only the die-hard sup­port­ers turned out.

Those who did found acres of at­trac­tions with a fine se­lec­tion of gi­ant steam en­gines, to­gether with vin­tage cars, trac­tors, com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles and mo­tor­cy­cles.

En­ter­tain­ment in­cluded the Head­corn-based Tiger Club Fly­ing Cir­cus, demon­strat­ing their skills by at­tack­ing bal­loon tar­gets re­leased from the fields and Kuchina and her danc­ing horses.

A bungy jump chal­lenge stood be­side the old fash­ioned fair­ground, while oth­ers took he­li­copter flights over the show­ground or vis­ited the arts and crafts mar­quees and en­joyed the bands.

How­ever it was the un­mis­tak­able smell and sounds of smoke bil­low­ing from the gleam­ing en­gines of by­gone days that re­mained the star at­trac­tion.

Pic­tures Gary Browne pd1212090

En­gines are the heart of the Sellindge fes­ti­val

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Phil Bur­rows with a cre­ation from Good­fellers Tree Sur­geons

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Harry Hud­son on The Ris­ing Sun

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Roger Macey from Can­ter­bury with ‘Beau’

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A vin­tage fair­ground or­gan

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The Ris­ing Sun from Hor­sham

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Many trac­tors and farm ve­hi­cles were on dis­play

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