Did I mention that there’s a well-oiled team behind this?
While I’ve been setting up this site, the committee have been busy. We’ve got the alcohol licence, so we can push ahead with the beer tasting tent. This is going to be an interesting offering, as Greg’s son is a keen brewer and beer enthusiast & he plans to give talks about the subject. T is at pains to point out, though, that it’s her name on the licence, and so she would be the one in trouble should we fall foul of the law! I’ve promised her that we’ll police it well.
One thing on my mind at the moment is our exciting idea to have a clay pigeon shoot. This is an awesome new venture for the fete, and one that I’m sure will be extremely popular with attendees – if we can do it. The guy who runs it is very keen, and is currently looking into the licensing required. My main concern, though, is getting it covered by the fete’s insurance – but I’ve heard about it happening at other village fetes, so I know it’s possible to sort out.
Getting an ice-cream van has proven more difficult. Two local ones are already booked for other events. I must ask T if she has a contact – otherwise we’ll do like like year and sell Magnums & lollies from a freezer! It’ll be cheaper & bring in more funds for the fete.
It’s the same story with the barbecue. To get a good one, you need to book at least 6 months in advance. However, Greg’s managed to convince someone to lend one, and to do some cooking. We’ll just need to supply the food. S tells me that hotdogs are extremely profitable, and easy to do, so that’s definitely an option to consider.
Handy Fete Tip: Be organised! Book external people as early as possible, and otherwise they’ll get snapped up by other events.
One of the subjects for the next meeting will be how we advertise the fete.
One of our committee members has previously surveyed fete attendees to discover that the majority come from either the village, or neighbouring villages. The fete has previously relied on traditional ways of marketing the fete, using signposts and local newspapers. We’re now wondering whether social media & online promotion can add to this in any worthwhile way.
Drop by our Facebook page or Tweet us with your views. I should probably set up Instagram too!
I’d prepared a pros and cons list for each of the proposed fete locations which I presented to the committee. By this time, the thought of arranging a road closure was not a particularly attractive proposition due to the closeness of the deadline for submitting the form, and also inconvenience to the residents. Fortunately, the committee agreed. That left the pub and Greg’s Eggs as the only real contenders. Perhaps it was the sloe gin that Greg brought that swayed the final decision, or perhaps the committee was impressed by the enthusiasm and excitement (or should that be egg-citement) of a new location for the fete. Whatever the reasons, the new venue was chosen.
The only problem with the chosen venue is its location. How can we get villagers who don’t drive (and can’t walk) to the fete? There’s been a suggestion of using local tractors & trailers! Well, this is the countryside after all!
Handy fete tip: Have a well-oiled team!
Slow gin & wine certainly make meetings more pleasant. It’s also great when you have a team that makes things happen. I was really impressed that the committee were receptive to new ideas, quickly figuring out how to make things work, whilst ensuring that we don’t lose sight of the traditional character of the fete.
I visit the yard. It certainly has potential. I meet the chickens, dogs and sheep.
Greg greets me with a piece of paper. He’s done a suggested layout of where the different stalls could be. There’s plenty of room for parking. There’s even an outbuilding that could be used as a stage for the ukulele band. He’s also come up with a list of possible activities on the back of the layout plan. It’s a working yard, but he assures me that his equipment can be safely locked up out of the way.
The only real drawback is the location. It’s right on the edge of the village – at the Ufton crossroads. It’s about a 20 minute walk from the church.
Impressed by the enthusiasm, I invite him to the meeting on Thursday, at which the committee will make the final decision on the venue.
Wandering about the village, and wondering about the different options for the fete venue, I found myself walking past the village noticeboard. I spotted that there was a meeting of the parish council that evening. Maybe they could suggest an easier way to have the fete at the village hall, or come up with a suggestion that we hadn’t yet considered.
So, off I went, with DH kindly offering moral support to help me navigate the complexities and formalities of local government. Their usual agenda allows for a villager to speak for 3 minutes on a subject of their concern. So I explained our dilemma, and requested of their collective wisdom and experience. The parish council were not particularly keen on the road closure ideas. One particular concern (which we hadn’t yet considered) was that parking would be an issue. They also explored the local farm fields ideas – but, again, the lack of power and water was a serious drawback.
The council were expressing sorrow that they were unable to help any further. when, suddenly a voice cried out, “You can have it at mine!”.
It turns out that one of our newest parish councillors is equally keen to do something for the village. He has a tree surgery business, and small farm, just on the outskirts of the village. We arrange that I go there for a look the next day. Could having the fete in his yard work?
I contemplate the new possibilities as the parish council discuss lampposts in the village.
Barcelona was freezing. It snowed.
I got to re-visit the Sagrada Família and La Pedrara on the Monday, whilst DH attended MWC. We went to the Circuit de Cataluna on Tuesday, to find snow on the seats in the grandstand! We were very privileged and lucky to have a friend of a friend show us around the Renault garage, and I was excited to see Ted Kravitz from Sky F1 in the paddock. It snowed and rained on Wednesday, and then we flew back on Thursday to the Beast From The East and Storm Emma.
The wretched weather meant that the fete committee meeting would have to be postponed until the following week. Consequently, it also meant that we would have less time to apply for road closures, if that was the committee’s decision. I had to put my thinking hat on.