What a great sight it was to see so many families enjoying the 2016 Tetbury Summer Show on the recreation ground. It was near perfect conditions with a sunny afternoon and just a light breeze, which is fortunate as there are quite a few restrictions on inflatable attractions these days and if the wind picks up, these cannot be used. They are however very popular with Tetbury children and stayed busy all afternoon. The show opening parade through the town, led as always by the City of Bristol Pipes and Drums, was once again well supported and drew quite an appreciative crowd. The land train, Mark Drakes beautiful vintage steam car transporting the Deputy Mayor of Tetbury, the extra long-legged Professor Crump, plus wacky race carts, Dolphins Dramatic Society in costume, 29 Regiment and so many others added colour and spectacle. This year we were able to add some glamour to the parade as it included costumes loaned us by the Art Couture festival of wearable art, held every two years in Painswick; definitely worth a visit in 2018.
On the show ground it was heartening to see there were so many stalls this year, the majority of which were local traders, charities or clubs. One that drew quite a lot of interest all afternoon was the Model Railway Club which had several layouts on display with many members on hand to give advice. The one exception saw the return of stunt driver Dick Sheppard who did some of the driving in the original film The Italian Job and who, in his career, has wrecked over 2,000 cars. He had an impressive display of photographs and was also selling copies of his latest book, an interesting guy if you had a chance to talk with him. The marquee was also a hive of activity all afternoon with the usual high standard of entries in all the exhibits, but it does get quite warm in there.
Naturally an event of this size cannot exist without a large number of volunteers and those traders in the town who make a contribution both on the day and in the months of preparation to help ensure success. The Lions have supported the Show both financially and by manning the gates for many years and were once again on hand to ensure all went smoothly and revenue kept coming in. IHS in the Cirencester Road have been the financial mainstay of this show for over a decade and kept loyal this year with another four-figure donation. Another regular supporter has been John Newman of Jesse Smith Butchers who not only ensured we got a good deal on all food associated with the Big Pan, but also gave up his day off to cook and make sure all went smoothly and without incident. Cliff Perks went the extra mile to support the parade with three Reliant Robins, a giant crème egg and a “CHIPs” motorcycle. To the Lions, IHS, John Newman, Cliff Perks and all who contributed in any way to the success of the show, the committee extends its most sincere appreciation for a magnificent job.
We can now look forward to some new attractions in 2017 and of course the return of a few favourites, put the date Sunday 13th August in the diary.
Summer Show Committee