Club AGM and Pickering at War

Club AGM and Pickering at War

I arrived at around 12.15pm on theThursday to help Ian and Linda set up camp. After a quick bite, we were soon in our rythm. The tent and Gazebo (NAAFI) were up with camouflage net in place, four flag poles erected and flags and bunting flying. Inside there were a selection of more flags, bunting and many wartime posters. Later we were joined by Alan and Caroline, completing our contingent for the first night.

Friday and Linda and I had an early start, getting dressed to catch the troop train. The first train had a large number of evacuees on board. We travelled the line, visiting every station to see what was happening, though at this time a lot of setting up was the order of the day. On return toPickering, we had a look around to get our bearings for the big day before returning to camp for tea. During the day five members had arrived to swell the numbers. The highlight of the evening was the club AGM (see seperate report) followed by a visit to the Soup KItchen and finally the evening sing along with Linda (Vera Lynn) Tough.

Saturday and the big day in Pickering. Another uniform donned and again we set off for town. This time the place was heaving. It is reckoned there were between 25,000 and 30,000 people in town, and nearly half in period dress. The parade of troops and associated vehicles took place late morning. Everywhere things were happening, with a number of singers, open air dancing and special events, etc. We bought a few bits from some of the many specialist slalls in town (yes another uniform) before finally heading back to camp. This evening was the AGM Dinner at Flamingo Land and the chance to dress up in service dress uniform (very smart), followed by more entertainment in the NAAFI.

Sunday, another uniform and once again back to town. We caught the first train into Whitby, before returning back to Grosmont to take part in a parade and inspection of the troops by Field Marshall Montgomery. We bravely passed through German occupied territory before getting back into Pickering mid afternoon for another walk around and get a few provisions. Finally we left for the last time and headed back to camp. On arrival we were set on spud bashing and veggy peeling ready for the ‘Bangers and Mash’ street party arranged by our marshals that evening. In the meantime we had been joined by three new members to swell our numbers. A great evening followed with the raffle and more singing of those wartime classics.

Monday and it was time to lower the flags and pull down the camp and make ready for home. Altogether a brilliant weekend and special thanks all present for being such good company and to Ian and Linda for pulling it all off. Already a few of us are planning a return visit next year.

Nick Mawby

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