Devon County Show car park chaos as tractors rescue stricken vehicles from the mud

Cars had to be rescued from mud by tractors at the Devon County Show
Cars had to be rescued from mud by tractors at the Devon County Show -Credit:Submitted

Cars have had to be rescued by tractors at the Devon County Show today after becoming stuck in the mud. Organisers said they were working to get visitors off the showground as quickly and safely as possible at the end of the event today (May 18), despite the conditions of the ground and weather.

They said extra people, towing eyes, and tractors would be dispatched to each car park to help. A statement from Devon County Show which was posted on X, formerly Twitter, earlier this evening said: "We are doing everything we can to get visitors off the showground in their cars quickly and safely, despite the challenging ground and weather.

"We have despatched extra people, more towing eyes and tractors to each car park. Thank you for your patience as we work through this."


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One visitor whose car became stuck in the mud while trying to leave shared a picture of his vehicle covered in mud after teams attempted to tow it out. He said the vehicle which attempted to rescue them had also become stuck before a tractor arrived to help half an hour later.

The visitor told DevonLive: "After about 10 minutes someone passing in a 4x4 tried to tow us. But they got stuck too - hence the mud cover as they tried to leave themselves. Someone in a tractor was doing great work towing people and took about 30 minutes to get to us. Then smooth sailing with a bit of queuing on the way out. Well organised rescue!"

About 100,000 visitors are expected to attend the Devon County Show over the course of three days. The highly anticipated event is holding its 128th show at Westpoint Arena and Showground in Clyst St Mary, near Exeter this weekend.

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However, a mixture of heavy rainfall and traffic on the roads has caused some chaos in the area today (May 18). Frustrated motorists have been contacting DevonLive reporting major issues on the road network.

The M5 was reported to be 'absolutely rammed' earlier today and routes out to and beyond Exeter Services were said to be at a 'complete standstill'. 'No cars (had been moving) for at least an hour and a half,' one driver said.

Another motorist reported that the A379 was 'crawling' only and there was gridlock at the Devon Hotel roundabout as visitors came in from all directions for the action-packed attraction, which started in the week.

A yellow Met Office warning for thunderstorms has been in force over Devon today, with some areas experiencing flash flooding. Yealmpton near Plymouth was badly affected, with pictures showing people wading through the streets.