The Devon County Show (part 1 of 2)

The Devon County Show takes place over three days in mid-May, typically a week before the Spring bank holiday weekend. There’s so much going on at the show it’s too much for one blog posting so here we are looking at visiting the show – everything you need to know before making it through the the gates…

Crowds at the Devon County Show

Will it rain?

Well it usually does at some point over the three days. The Devon County Show takes place over a Thursday, Friday and Saturday around about the 20th May each year. So not quite the height of summer and the weather can be hit and miss. If the sun does shine it impact visitor numbers and will make the show much busier with visitors who will attend only if there is a favourable forecast.

How to get there.

The show takes place at the Westpoint Showground on the outskirts of Exeter. The site is well connected at the point where the A30 (North Devon and East Devon), the A38 (South Devon) and the M5 meet. Due to the popularity of the show there will be a queue to enter the site which extends for many miles in each direction. So plan ahead and expect a 30 to 60 minute delay when approaching. The entrance and car parks (fields) are well marshalled, so once through the entrance you will be directed to a space quickly and efficiently.

The only tip is to set off and arrive early. The show opens at 8am so there is plenty to see and do at this time, and to be honest, arriving early is recommended to see everything.

How to get out.

What goes in must come out. So the thousands of cars which descended on the site in the morning will try to leave in the late afternoon. So be prepared to queue.

To avoid the queues leave early or leave late. With such a wide range of things to see and do at the show, leaving early seems somewhat criminal. So our tip would be leave it late, have a drink (or pack a late afternoon picnic and let the queues go down before trying to leave.

How much?

Entrance to the show in 2011 was £18 for an adult, £15.50 for over 65s and £6.50 for children. You can save money by buying tickets in advance from certain outlets such as Tourist Information Centres. Also on the final day, the Saturday, children have free admission.

Is it value for money?

Well that depends on what you expect for £18. There can’t be too many days out for £18 where you can watch a sheep being sheared, women’s tug of war, a motorcycle stunt team, see Kirsty Allsopp with the Devon Cream Tea, and ride a vintage traction engine…

Read about what you will find at The Devon County Show.