Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A saucey weekend!...

Went to the Penshurst Craft Fair on Sunday and concluded that it is really just a glorified market. Interesting, but really just a big market place. Why then does it cost over a fiver to get in? £5.80 to be precise, so that's £11.60 if you're a couple (thankfully children get in free.) To be perfectly honest with you all I had some freebie tickets, since I agreed to put a poster up in my shop for them so I shouldn't complain now should I! There were a staggering number of cars parked up by the marquees for the three day event when we arrived for what was to be a whistle-stop tour of the fair. Two hours later I was still walking around, stopping to talk to the traditional hurdle fencing guy, who sounded like a cider drinking country bumkin from the 19th Century. His prices certainly weren't 19th C though! I did manage to pick up a large blue breakfast cup from a pottery, which was £9 but just what I've been looking for for my morning coffee, and very individual. The lady told me I could stick it in the dishwasher and the microwave so that was good enough for me. Having said that if the handle falls off I'll have to wait for the next craft fair in May since I've no idea who she was. There was some serious money being made there I can tell you. Mind you those exhibitors have to take about £1,000 over the 3 days before they've made a penny. You see those stalls don't come cheap at around £700 for the average sized pitch. I know it sounds alot but the fella who was doing a roaring trade on the home made curry sauces stand told me that they would normally expect to take in the region of £6,000 at this fair. That's a heck of a lot more than Mr. Books takes at the average book fair I can tell you; maybe I'm in the wrong game after all and need to brush up on my ethnic and traditional culinary skills! What should I call this new venture? Why Mr. Sauce of course!...

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sounds like the country fair that sprung up at Mabledon Farm the other week. Over a fiver to get in, just to watch an Owl called Bob not do as it was told, and in the,the, ahem, "Beer Tent", drink some overly warm and thus very fizzy Heineken (WHAT ARE THESE PEOPLE THINKING, THIS IS KENT. GET SOME LOCAL BREWS IN FFS!) The sausages from Southborough butchers were great mind.

Anonymous said...

£9 for a mug - come on Tonbridgeblog - you were 'done'.

The Tomahawk Kid said...

Paying an entrance fee to events which are nothing more than markets happens all the time, and it is a con! Even things like The Ideal Home Show, Clothes Show Live, BBC Good Food Show etc. These are dressed up as more than a marketplace, but that is all they are. Still, good luck to them if people are prepared to pay to be advertised to!

This is not the only instance of paying for the privilege of advertising - what about paying for carrier bags that are adverts for the shop? I am sure there are many other cases too.

Oh dear, it sounds like more moaning. Mr A. Nonymous will not be happy, but then again he doesn't have the time to read this blog in any case!

Anonymous said...

and the infamous fenced off Tonbridge garden show thing. Twas nothing more than an overweight geezer flogging tatty Blue Peter and Billy Bunter annuals to the terminally bewildered.

Tonbridge blogger said...

It was a cup actually. I'm the mug!

Delia said...

It is very sad that we always have to pay to go anywhere here in England. I do take exception to it and dislike it intensely. On the continent towns have flea markets in the High Street, or in our case it could be around Castle or river, and people do not have to pay for a pitch. They just bring a table and set up their goods and everything is happy and fine and well attended. The councils gain no rent from them and even get the street cleaners in afterwards. The difference between England and the continent is that we are an insular lot and are simply not offered anything from our local councils, but bled of the last penny in our pockets. It's not a very nice place really and I wonder why I am here.

The Tomahawk Kid said...

Delia, you are spot on. Surely the attitude you describe is why towns in this country are dying. Tonbridge & Malling need to take urgent action to breath life back into Tonbridge town centre rather than driving businesses and shoppers away. Markets, free parking, reduced business rates and incentives for shops should all be high on their agenda.

Tonbridge Castle is a very underused facility. I know there is music from time to time, but it is such a beautiful location that it should be the hub of the town with lots going on there.

Tonbridge Lady said...

Did anyone go to the Medieval Fair last weekend?
It was free, in the Castle grounds and though not a huge event, was well done. Lots of people sitting around enjoying the entertainment. I wish more things like this went on for us Tonbridge folk.

andys-pens said...

Perhaps you could combine the two and call your self Mr Saucy Books. I bet that would cause some interest.

andys-pens said...

We went to Pets in the Park at the Hop farm and that was £8 each. Time we brought some handmade dog treats and a new collar we had spent nearly £50.