Well I must say the Forde Abbey Summer Fair has felt like the climax of the last month for us. We set a goal of having all our current products available and the website up to scratch and launched by the 28th of July. And we made it….. Just!
I, unfortunately had to go into work for a couple of hours on the morning of the show (which meant a 0430 start) but was back just as the gates opened to the public at 11am. By this point Emily had been there for 3hrs or so already, and with the the help of a friend of ours had managed to dissuade the marquee from becoming a kite and was adding the finishing touches as I arrived. Thanks also go to our surrounding stall holders for rushing to the aid with tent pegs and tank tape.
Rain threatened in a weather format common only to the British Isles (drizzle) but the unperturbed public flooded in sporting an armoury of brollies and waterproofs. Then suddenly, it seemed, everyone was bathed in sunshine. Jackets were thrown off and brollies flapped to get rid of the droplets as Forde Abbey and her grounds steamed and glinted. Chatter and laughter grew in volume to compete with the commentary from the arena where dogs and owners were being put through their paces on the agility course. The smells of the hog roast and pizza tents wafted up and down the rows of stalls and hot dogs eyed up the hotdogs, waiting for the inevitable.
On either side of the path through the magnificent winding grounds, classic machines of all shapes, sizes and colours gleamed just as much as their proud owners. A fantastic turnout from the MG and Triumph clubs and the Cobra replica club to name a few. All the correct noises of appreciation are emanating from small groups of people gathered around the cars and heads crane to see the fleetingly revealed and gleaming engine bays before the owners snap shut the bonnet.
Entertainment from the arena continued with falconry from horseback, a terrific display which included the birds swooping down to ground level to fly under the horse, a sight as impressive as the magnificent backdrop that was the abbey itself. Above all the most noticeable thing about this show for me was that everywhere you looked there where happy people.
It seemed to be the perfect combination of good food, bustling stalls and great weather, a real recipe for smiles.
Lastly, a big thank you to all our friends who helped to set up and dropped in to see us and to everyone who liked our products enough to take one home. Especially the lady who bought a bow tie for her little boy to wear as page boy. We hope you had a lovely time at the wedding.