Message from the Chair
Firstly, I would like to wish you all a belated Happy New Year.
At this time, we look back at 2022, which, as you will hear at the AGM, was a difficult one financially, and forward to 2023.
We are looking at the all events we will be looking to attend and below are details of those we have confirmed and those we are still to finalise. However, one that we will not be attending is the Firle Horse and Country Show, as we have been advised that this will not be taking place this year. This will leave a hole in our calendar, so if anyone has any ideas on what we can to fill this, please contact one of the committee.
Below are details of the Annual General Meeting. As you can see we do have some vacancies on the committee, so if you are interested in joining, please let Jean, our secretary know. It is important that we have a strong committee not only to arrange events but also to help with setting up and clearing up on the day. To do this, you do not have to be committee members, as all assistance is very welcome. In addition, if you have an idea for an event, one of the committee will be very happy to work with you to ensure that it is viable and successful.
I look forward to seeing you at the AGM.
2023 confirmed events (For these events, other than the Firle Garden Show, Booking Forms will be sent out after the A.G.M.)
21st to 23rd April Firle Garden Show. We will once again be returning to this very popular venue which has proved to be a great success for our members in the past. As this is our first event of the year, Booking Forms will be sent out very soon. Please complete and return to Jean as quickly as possible as this will help greatly with our final arrangements
24th & 25th June Broyle Country Show. This will be our third visit to a well-attended event, where the organisers are once again expanding the overall appeal. As in previous year’s we will be using gazebos as this is both cost effective and fits well with the venue.
19th & 20th August Tractorfest at Biddenden. After returning last year we are pleased that the event will remain at the same venue so we expect another good crowd.
28th August Le Marche, Heathfield. This has proved to be very successful for our members in the last two years. Spaces will be limited, so when Booking Forms are received, please return then to Jean as quickly as possible.
18th and 19th November Cooden Beach Hotel. After a two-year gap it was good to return to this venue last year. We have now agreed terms to return this year. Please return Booking Forms to Angela, as soon as possible as depending on numbers will determine the space we will need.
2023 provisional events
1st & 2nd July Camper Marmalade We attended this for the first-time last year but have been advised that the organisers are reviewing arrangements for this year. We are keeping in touch with them and once things are confirmed we will advise members.
Bentley Woodfair. Although we are advised that this event will take place, we have not had confirmation of the dates. As planning is at an early stage this means that we have not been able to confirm financial arrangements.
Herstmonceux Village Hall. After a successful first year we are pleased that the event will remain at the same venue so we expect another good crowd. We will confirm that date as soon as possible.
Rotherfield Village Hall. Another where dates are to be confirmed.
Nutley War Memorial Hall. Also looking to confirm dates
Annual General Meeting
As previously advised the Annual General Meeting will be held at Robertsbridge Village Hall on Thursday 16th February. Members are invited to attend from 7pm for a 7-30pm start. Light refreshments will be served.
The existing committee members have all expressed their willingness to stand for re-election but there are still opportunities for others to join. It is always good to have new blood, with new ideas, so if you think that you can make a contribution, please contact the Secretary for more information. It is important that we have some increased succession and committee members who are able to undertake the various tasks both before and during an event.
As the Chair has said, 2022 was a difficult year financially, and the Treasurer will give a full report, but it is necessary, to make some changes to both the cost of events for members attending and how we pay. Therefore, for all of our larger events we will require a £20 non-refundable deposit at the time of booking and the balance to be paid six weeks before the event. This is due to the significant costs which cannot be re-couped close to the event. The exception is the Firle Garden Show where the full cost will need to be paid at the time of booking as it is impractical to take a deposit given the limited time involved.
For smaller events, primarily those later in the year we are now requesting a non-refundable deposit of £10 per event, with the balance being paid 6 weeks prior to the fair.
By taking this balanced approach we hope that members will appreciate, as do the committee, that we are all facing increased costs and need to be able to commit our resources in a way that does not have a significant financial impact on the group.