Amblecote Allotment Guild - Scarecrow and Community Day
Fortunately it was a fine weather day for the Amblecote Allotment Guild, based in School Drive, to hold their Community Open Day which had a theme around scarecrows. The Amblecote History Society together with other local organisations and charities had been kindly invited to show a presence, so how could we resist? Helen, Mike and myself did some preparatory work in order that we could put on a good show, attract interest and informed conversation with Amblecote residents, to recruit new members and to promote copies of Graham Fisher’s “Whiskers on Kittens” at a special discounted rate.
We arrived at the allotment site at 9.30am in order to set up a specially selected portfolio of photographs of Amblecote on our stands, some showing the allotment site in 1938 which was of interest to many plot holders. Others showed Amblecote in days of yesteryear: trams running in Brettell Lane, Glass Cones long since gone; adapted retail premises in Brettell Lane; Withymoor before Sainsbury’s and of course the old school building in School Drive, also now demolished. We also displayed the posters of the 2015 meetings that had taken place as well as encouraging our visitors to attend the forthcoming John Sparry talk on 9th September - hopefully we have been successful in attracting new folk to come along even if it is just for one meeting of their choice.
Lance, Helen and Mike.
The event itself was well attended by plot holders, who were generally Amblecote folk, noticeably many living in Platt’s Crescent, and by casual members of the general public who fully engaged the Amblecote History Society stand. We certainly handed out plenty of membership applications & flyers and chatted enthusiastically with people who had a genuine interest in Amblecote history and indeed many had a tale to tell of their own recollections of life in Amblecote over the year. I lost count how many times the phrase “I remember when…” was used during the day and, yes, we did manage to sell a couple of copies of “Whiskers on Kittens” from our small stock of Graham’s latest book.
Our Ward Councillor, Cllr Christine Perks, was very supportive of the whole community event and judged the scarecrow competition - without being rude please see the AHS Committee members in the photograph below with the prize winning scarecrows!
Mike, Helen and Lance. (Who is that 'Masked Stranger' on the right).
Amongst the other stalls on show were The Hall Green Greyhound Trust, Wild Acres Animal Rescue (based in Cradley Heath), a BBQ, the traditional tombola which sold out completely, face-painting, scarecrow making and a stand which sold some wonderful homemade cakes and preserves (yes we did partake - it would have been rude not to!).
By 3.30pm we were ready to pack up after an enjoyable day and one which will hopefully have made local Amblecote people much more aware of the History Society and its various activities and interests.
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