Another year; another few months talking about the weather as we start seeing snowdrops, primroses and witch hazel, and watch for other early growth in our gardens and on the allotments, planning both the Spring and Summer Flower Shows.
Last year was notable for a greater number of entrants than previously, (both local residents and from further afield), resulting again in impressive displays of flowers, vegetables, home produce and skilled craft work. We were particularly pleased to see more “Floral Art” exhibits, with new names on cups and trophies, so hope this will continue.
As always, the success of the Shows is dependent on hard work from every member of the Committee; the extra hands provided by regular volunteers who come forward every year to give practical help on the day; and the generous donations of cakes, raffle prizes and auction bids at the end of the afternoon. The Spring Show made a good profit which then helped offset the cost of the marquee for the Summer Show, but the high attendance in August, in near perfect weather, and record takings, meant that the loss was only around £200 instead of the usual £330. My sincere thanks go to everyone, from the President to the washers up, whatever their personal contribution, for such sterling work.
The “retirement” from the Committee of Karen de Groot, Tim Moore, Paul Tomlinson and Jerry Deeks after very long service, meant that we have had a new team learning the ropes. I am particularly grateful to Sarah and Clare for rising to the challenge of all the Secretarial responsibilities. We all appreciate even more just how much Karen did single-handedly, and must thank her again as she has continued to explain her archive of documents and helped us during the year. With Tim and Di Moore moving on from the village, Sarah and Pete picked up the “Scrap Heap Challenge” and organised an excellent afternoon’s workshop with a full house of crafters, so my thanks to them. Although standing down from the Committee, Pete has been an enormous support at every event and should have an extra mention!
We were delighted to welcome Katrina Hinkley and Geoff Simons to the team, and Dave Hartley has made a greater (and more stressful ) contribution than he anticipated when he took on the “cup monitor” tasks, because of the re-valuation exercise.
Producing the Spaxton Calendar also proved to be a much more demanding fund raising exercise than expected, so all credit to Sarah, Clare and Pete in recognising the extended effort which resulted in an excellent series of local photographs.
The Flower-arranging demonstration and workshop held in early September was really well supported and raised an impressive £190 profit. Thanks again are due to Sarah and Clare for organising the event, and to Jan Johnson for generously giving her time.
Finally, we supported the Church Xmas Tree Festival, enjoying an evening’s chat over a glass of wine while making an effort at inspired craft decorations.
I look forward to working with all the team this coming year and am confident that the traditional Shows will continue to be important events on the Spaxton calendar, with the support of, and benefit to, the local community.
Sally Foxhall, Chair.