The Association Hog Roast and Barbeque held on Sunday 15 July was a resounding success. Everyone who attended said how much they had enjoyed it and that it was a very relaxing afternoon.
Thank you so much to Anna and Edward Firth who made the venue look so beautiful, in spite of not long having moved in. Also to Anna's mother, Margaret, for the wonderful tea and cakes served later in the afternoon, and all her other help both behind the scenes and on the day.
The food (kindly donated by Gary Williamson of Williamson Butchers) was truly amazing and there was absolutely loads of it to go round. I think we can definitely say that nobody left hungry! Gary was there from 06.15 in the morning until after 7.00 at night, so he has to be thanked for his commitment and excellent cooking skills.
Thanks also to Ken Adams for organising the very good wine and soft drinks and also for organising the raffle with his usual attention to detail. He was also involved in collecting and returning the tables and chairs and so much more!
Les and Barbara Ayres are also thanked for their time and effort in overseeing the whole operation and for serving the salads, cake, cheese and more.
John Esler is also to be congratulated on arranging for the loan of the tables and chairs, for organising the attendance of Jo Johnson MP and for bringing a group of friends from Orpington Conservatives, with whom we have a strong relationship of mutual aid and support.
Our speakers - Richard Ashworth MEP, Michael Fallon MP and Jo Johnson MP were, as always, interesting to listen to and also enjoyed the sunshine in a beautiful English garden whilst chatting to members and friends.
We were particularly pleased to welcome several children to the event, many of whom enjoyed the organised tennis coaching for an hour or so during the afternoon.
Thanks also to our friends at Badgers Mount and Shoreham from whom we hired the marquee just in case it decided to rain. Luckily it didn't, but it provided shelter from the sun instead. They spent a long time not only erecting and dismantling the marquee but helping with tables and chairs and everything else they could. These events just could not take place without such willing volunteers.
Finally, but by no means least, we have to thank the musicians who entertained us so beautifully during the afternoon. We had a wonderful pianist who was sitting under a tree - sheltering from the sun rather than the rain for once - as well as a chamber quintet called Oddsox and the most endearing children's violin group who stole all our hearts. The gentle background music really added to the atmosphere of the afternoon.
Thank you to everyone who supported the afternoon and helped raise a very good amount for the Association's coffers.
Our next event will be a Christmas party and we are currently looking for a suitable venue, so if anyone has any offers or ideas, please do let us know.