Another successful Show!
After a blazing hot start to our summer, the weather was looking decidedly British for the 64th Village Show. Despite the threat of showers, the green was busy all afternoon with locals enjoying the sideshows, admiring the exhibits in the marquee and sampling the various food and drink outlets on offer, backed by the sounds of Epsom & Ewell Silver Band and Kingston Hospital Radio.
New to the Show this year, the committee ran a coconut shy, which proved a hit (and a few misses!) on the day. Alongside our long-lived tradition, Smash-a-Plate, we adopted the popular bookstall from WERA (a big thank-you to villagers for the donation of books).
For the Flower Show, the atmosphere inside the marquee was wonderful, colourfully decked out with exhibits from West End residents and beyond, in spite of the extraordinary summer weather which affected our gardens, flowers and produce. It was a testimony to the entrants’ commitment to help ‘the Show go on’ – and it was great to see more new entrants than ever before. Traditionally there is stiff competition among the top three contestants in the vegetable and fruit categories and this year was no exception. However, it was encouraging to see several new faces take some prizes. Lin Martin swept the board in the different flowering classes. Some new names in the floral art classes also wowed the public.
Cookery and preserve classes looked as appetising as ever with a number of new entrants and novices gaining success. Chris Hall won the Cookery Cup. The Handicraft section continues to demonstrate a very high standard of craftsmanship. Marion Ford was able to retain the Silver Challenge Cup with 2 firsts and a second, while Lynn Healy was judged to have the best single handicraft exhibit. A newcomer took home the Michael Newbould Cup for the most winning points in the Photography section whilst also gaining the judge’s choice for Best in Show.
A host of new names entered into the revamped Children’s categories including Daniel Malloy who managed to lift the Junior Challenge Cup for the Under 8s, winning over stiff competition and his older sister Martha who picked up the Alex Hunter Memorial Cup for the 8-11 year olds. The Roger Marsden Bowl for 12-15 year olds went to Jack Hambleton in another close competition.
The Dog Show was well attended again this year with over 55 dogs entering. We were happy to see several returning for another year as well as many welcome new faces. A new class, ‘Best Sausage Catcher’, was certainly a crowd pleaser. We were kindly sponsored by VOO Vets, who shared the judging with Sandy Newman. Best in Show was awarded to Marple the golden retriever (entered by Tricia Robinson of New Haw) and just over £250 was raised for Hearing Dogs for Deaf People.
The Arts & Crafts marquee comprised twenty interesting craft tables ranging from hand-made Liberty print gifts by Flax & Mallow to unique silver jewellery made by Oliver Jones. The exhibition of forty paintings and photographs from twelve artists included those by old favourites: the late well-known artist Anne Bull whose work was proudly exhibited by her husband Geoff and prominent local figure Lady Anne Hunt who not only exhibited her work but who provided much support behind scenes. There were some new artists and crafters together with regulars, some of whom have been attending the show in one guise or another for sixty years!
The Tug of War was reinstated in 2010 after a gap of twenty years, the Coronation Sports Day Shield having been unearthed from a local loft! Robin Crane again organised a Village team, pitched against Garsons. The Village has won the majority of ‘Wars’ since 2010 but it was a delighted Garsons team that won 2 pulls to 1 this year. The shield has pride of place somewhere on the Farm!
As ever, afternoon teas were very popular and the ladies and gents from Christ Church put their best foot forward to serve and clear away hundreds of cups of tea and delicious cakes and cream teas. All the money raised from the afternoon teas goes towards church funds and its charitable giving. Just over £900 was raised so thank you to everyone who supported.
We hope that everyone who attended the Show enjoyed all that was on offer. We are always keen to hear feedback as it helps the committee in making plans for future years.
Our aim is to provide an enjoyable traditional village event for all concerned and to showcase the village on the day. We remain ever grateful to our sponsors and advertisers who generously support our glossy programme that is delivered to every home in the village and is freely available at Garsons and other local businesses. We are also extremely grateful to the companies and individuals who donate raffle prizes. Without all of them and the kind subscriptions from villagers and donations from entrants, it would be impossible to fund the Show. Acknowledgement must be given to the volunteers and extended family for their efforts in helping the committee on the day. In addition to the fun had on the day, our aim is that local charities and good causes should benefit and we are always proud to be able to make donations in this regard.
Steve Kelly and the Village Show Committee