Just got back from Upton Festival ....and what a busy few days. Some of the organisation left a bit to be desired but most of the acts were very good.
We got there on Friday morning and having been told we could get on site at 7am were kept waiting until 7.30 when scurity opened the site. Found ourselves a pitch in the main shopping enclave and had everything erected by 10'sh only to find the public were not allowed into the arena until 5pm. Some traders had been there for 24 hours already so were already a bit dischuffed! Weather was very warm but a bit drizzly but the music played from 6pm till midnight and was very good. Friday night saw David sleeping in the gazebo while Frankie popped home.
Saturday dawned cooler and a bit breezy, one gazebo near the stage biting the dust, but we were OK with our storm guys in place - more as a precaution than a necessity. The arena opened at 11am this day with the music starting at 12 noon. Again an good line up of 'historic vintage' acts so we know most of the music and could sing along. Daylight was much better today so trading was steady rather than spectacular and ended about 10pm as although we could have stayed open till midnight our gazebo lights weren'y over effective and anyway once the main acts were on stage most punters were watching. Frankie stayed in the gazebo on Saturday night and David went home to the comfort of a proper bed and shower.
Sunday was a chilly morning but turned into a lovely afternoon and evening. David called in and bought some better quality gazebo lights so got there after the arena opened again at 11am. More well known bands from midday but as the weather got better so more people came into the trading area. Also being the last day we had customers who had been to see us previously coming back and making purchases. The new lights were very effective and made a big difference and in fact we had a few last minute sales when in previous night we would have been closed. Watchedthe fireworks at 9.30 and then closed at 10pm so we could go over and watch Slade (Dave Hill but no Nobby Holder). After a lound and bouncy 30-40 minutes went back to the gazebo and packed everything so to make it easier to break camp on Monday, David stayed in the gazebo overnight. Can't say slept as the adjoining (larde) stall and the funfair decided to break camp then and leave camp overnight. This was most inconsidrate of them as they didn't finish till after 1.30am and until then were making a loy of noise with HGV engines racing to power up the generators. Finally got to sleep after 2! Got up at 6, broke camp, left about 8 and home before 9.
Although there were some hiccups with the organisation on the whole we had a great time and some f the acts were outstanding. Particularly impressed with Chesney Hawkes (hence the blog title), The Troggs, Bad Manners and Slade but there wasn't a bad performance that we saw.
Next weekend we are at Bromsgrove Blue Cross fete on Wildmoor Lane, Catshill and its open from 12-4. This was a very good event last year although as there isn't a craft tent we are in our yellow topped gazebo again. See you there.................