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Bidford Bash – September 2016

Hippy Clothing @ The Bidford Bash

Bidford Bash Poster

Bidford Bash is an annual event held in Bidford-on-Avon which is a village nestled in the beautiful countryside of Warwickshire.
Bidford is a wonderfully quiet village right on the river Avon. Everyone in the village is friendly and the atmosphere of the place is just lovely. This is the reason that we decided to buy a house here back in 2015…. We just love it! There are so many places to explore. Walk for 5 minutes in any direction and you are in the country side.  Bliss!

Background

Back in 2015 the main bridge that connects Bidford to neighbouring villages such a Barton and Honeybourne was damaged. The bridge had to be closed because a large tractor type thing drove into the side taking a massive chunk out of it. As a result of this, it was majorly unsafe and was out of action for quite some time. As the bridge could not be used, traffic was diverted around the village rather than directly through it. Not only did this add major time to journeys but, the local businesses started to suffer as the traffic was just not making it into the heart of the village.

The bridge was out for the best part of the year and this meant that local businesses were really  suffering Business was suffering. So, the Bidford-on-Avon chamber of commerce got together with the businesses on the high street and suggested a street party to boost business. Everyone was in great agreement and so plans began.

The 1st bash was brilliant. The whole high street was closed and there were things going on from the top of the high street all the way to the bottom which involved most of the businesses. There were live bands, food stalls, face painting, games, tea and cakes. You name it, it would seem that it was there. The figures that were shared told us that there were over 3000 people that attended. Just a few then!

They thought it such a success that they decided to make it an annual event. As the bridge would be open by the time the next one came about, they decided to move it over to the big meadow. This way there would more space to accommodate more people. More people meant more stalls and entertainment.

Mystical Mayhem

Mystical Mayhem Hippy Stall

So, how did we get involved? Well, we were supplying some of our hippie clothes for a hippy inspired party, and one of the ladies who bought from us, it turns out was involved. She was part of the chamber of commerce. She suggested that we should get involved and have a stall there. Great idea we though – bring the stall to our home village so that is exactly what we did.

The 2016 Bidford Bash was held on the 17th of September – preparations began.

As this little Bidford-on-Avon festival was so close to home (like literally 3 minutes) it meant that we didn’t need to leave the house at the crack of dawn. So, we arrived, the sun was shining and we found out that we had a great pitch right by the beer tent, food stalls and the main stage. Happy days!!
We had our stall up in record time and even bought a new sign for our hippy stall. I have to say, it looked rather good 🙂

We were set up by 11.00 and ready to go. The doors didn’t open until midday so it gave us a change to have rest before thousands of people arrived.

 

The Day

Bidford Bash Crowd

Now you have to remember that this was the first real outing for the Bidford Bash as a festival so there were going to be a few issues.  All of the stalls were set out very sporadically and everything was so spread out and far apart. Unfortunately this gave the festival a very unorganised feel. We were separate from all of the other stalls as we were staying later than them (they all left by 18.00). We had a nice pitch near the action although other stall holders had mentioned to me they also would have benefited from being where we were. Stall holders and the public had mentioned to us that they felt things could have been streamed lined to bring things closer to the street festival feel of 2015.

To be honest, although the day didn’t really pan out for us, we still had a lovely day and met some really lovely people.MMC and Food StallsAll the people helping organise the event (those yellow high viz tops you saw floating around) were very helpful and friendly and were quick to sort out any issues.  We know how hard you all worked to bring this little festival together.

The WI supplied beautiful tea and cakes (these ladies were great and I became known as the purple guy with the big beard). There were many other attractions too – The tombola, the Italian market, bands, face painting and games for kids. There was even a bucking bronco.

Not forgetting the food stall – they were amazing too! The Lazy Pig and an awesome noodle stall next to us. Yummy!

Going Forward

For those that attended, it seems as though a great day was had by all. Both adults and kids loved it – especially when we got our glow sticks out in the evening.  And hey for £1 entrance, who can argue with practically free music and entertainment?

We are now on the chamber of commerce so we can attend any committee meeting relating to next year’s Bash. This means we get to voice our opinion which as avid festival goers should hopefully mean something.  Most of the stalls had the same opinion as us with regards to the set up so let’s hope that we can help to make next year bigger and better!

We love Bidford on Avon and have high hopes for the future of this event as it has amazing potential.  With live music, great food and local businesses taking an interest things should move in the right direction.  Well done guys for a stepping into the unknown and bringing the great British festival to Bidford on Avon. We are looking forward to hearing the plans for next year.

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