Maud has done this fair for a number of years & knows a number of the stall holders & Thornton Kay the Events Manager. There is also Matt who keeps everything together on the setting up & opening days, who rides around on a quad bike sporting a black top hat!! This is a huge event & not just huge in terms of the number of exhibitors but also the nature of the business of the exhibitors. It includes reclamation products, large garden statues, large & heavy furniture. Many use cranes to lift products off trucks, hired to bring the things to the event. In addition to this, some exhibitors drive down in vans or caravans in which they sleep over, while others stay locally in the surrounding B&B's & Pubs. With what is available you could redo your garden - to look totally French or Italian. Along with these are exhibits like ours that have soft furnishings & lighting etc. We are grateful that the weather holds out & we have a heavy duty marquee to work from....
The days are long but everyone is supportive of each other. Wednesday is a Trade day, with Saturday and Sunday being open. It is quite buzzy & people from all walks of life, from trendy Battersea to the almost Bohemian ...along with such a range of dogs. As the fair is on a farming property belonging to Lord & Lady McAlpine, their 3 dogs are continually running around mixing with the other dogs. Imagine a large Golden Labrador (called Boris) with 2 English Pugs, one Black & one white. They were quite the life of the party. The McAlpines are eclectic collectors & have a Train from Wales that is fully operational, taking children & adults for a half mile ride. Also alongside the train is a full sized Carousel. There is an old blue Citroen van painted up, while a couple from Henley-on-Thames served coffees.
All in all it was a fun 3 days of meeting lots of new people: both the exhibiting stall holders & all the customers looking for that special something.
More urban collections ..
You can see what I mean about large scale garden statues etc ...
Lord & Lady McAlpine's home whose property the Salvo Fair was on - here can be seen an Alpaca as there were many animals close to the home.
More lovelies to choose from ...
Work in progress as we set up the outside our Marquee
Maud's famous Indigo dyed Hungarian sack cloth cushions, tablecloths & linen.
We set up with themed areas of colours.
Another view of our marquee.
Another Marquee near us with old wares & linens.
The carousel that children enjoyed ... this was collected by the McAlpines.
No miniature trains here but a full sized decommissioned train from Wales that the McAlpines bought & set up near the carousel on their property. Children & adults can ride for half a mile in the open carriages after purchasing tickets from the original train station now located there.
Lord & Lady McAlpine doing the rounds of stall holders with their dogs. They bought more things to add to their collections, including a horse cart from the lady next to us !!!
What a finish - the pugs come to say goodbye to us ....