Friday was the schools; Saturday was the public. Both days were hosted by Mark and Phillippa Wiggin at their home, Downton Hall; the Saturday was put on to raise money for repairs to the local church, and visitors were able to walk round the beautiful gardens as well as listening to a talk by yours truly and a close-up look (and listen) at 1264.
Well over 100 people turned up, and the weather stayed fine, albeit a bit fresh. The setting is very special, and everyone had a great time. The engine started first time, and more than £1,000 was raised for the church. the only downside was the large pool of castor oil on the Wiggin’s drive, but I think we were forgiven!
There is never enough time to talk to all the people who come to these events, and I was particularly sorry not to speak to the chap who brought along a genuine 1914 RNAS watch, such as would have been issued to Grandad.
We were all done by 1400, but by the time we’d packed 1264 back into the trailer and cleared all the other stuff away, we were only fit for a trip to the pub for an evening meal, and an early bed.