Easter 2007 and Rain Won't Stop Play -  Notgrove, Wilts.

5-9th Apr 2007

When the Kilbeys and Fields ran their last rally in nearby Moreton in the Marsh last September the heavens opened and dampened the celebrations. This time the procurement of the village hall would ensure that play would continue no matter what! Of course, knowing that it was defeated, the weather decided it might as well be glorious for the whole weekend but the village hall still came into its own for the evening shenanigans.

This was the club's first visit to the lovely village of Notgrove and we camped on the perimeter of the immaculately kept cricket ground. What a lovely site it was, surrounded by trees to give a lovely 'clearing in the woods' feel. The fact that it was Easter meant we had 4 nights to celebrate and Messrs Kilbey & Field were determined that we would enjoy ourselves.

Thursday evening was a chance to catch up with old friends over a cuppa provided by the marshals as the last of the ralliers arrived.

On Friday evening Rob Told us that we would all be able to say that we had rallied in the head offices of P&O Shipping. This was because soon after the outbreak of the second World War P&O's London offices had been bombed forcing them to flee to the country for safety. They set up shop in the sleepy village of Notgrove and after the war donated one of the buildings to become the village hall. After this bit of history were were treated to 'Moreton Mayhem'. This was the Rob Kilbey/Len Field double act that had had to be called off when rain stopped play on the Moreton rally last September. Rob and Len had us rolling in the aisles with laughter at their antics and jokes and innuendo.

By Saturday morning Len had recovered enough to lead a 4 mile walk around the local area ending up at a pub for lunch. Later in the day Michael Bird displayed his fully aerobatic model Typhoon aircraft and drew a small crowd of children (young and old alike!) That evening we all gathered in the village hall again for an American supper.

On Sunday morning Rob invited anyone interested to see himself and other bellringers at work in the local church. I think he was surprised at the number who turned up, but what better way to spend an hour on Easter Sunday morning? Afterwards there was an Easter egg hunt and later in the day the Marshals organised an Easter Bonnet parade and we were treated to some amazing creations the ladies had put together. Flag was held on Sunday evening and afterwards the cake and wine flowed as Steve & Sharon Horn celebrated their 50th rally and Terry & Alison Owen their 100th. Area Committee member Paul Phillips performed the honours making the presentations in his usual competent style.

On Monday it was time to pack up and leave and it was with some sadness that we pulled our van off the rally field. It had been a great rally and we hope the Club will hold another one there soon. You will have gathered that the success of this rally was in great part due to the efforts of the marshals . A very big thanks then to Rob & Sue Kilbey and Len & Dot Field.

Uncle Giles

Pics © & courtesy Michael & Rosemarie Bird and Martin Roberts

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