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Medway Festival of Steam and Transport 2013

Report by Alan Wenbourne

A caricature of Alan Wenbourne drawn at the festivalThe Medway Festival of Steam and Transport took place at the Historic Dockyard Chatham on 31st March and 1st April 2013.

This year we were on the ground floor of No. 5 covered slip, giving us the advantage of being able to drive in and up to our tables for unloading. Also, the Modelling Zone was combined with the Trader Village and Caterers, which would increase the visitor throughput. Three members opted out due to the cold weather as the slip is open-ended and can be draughty.

Fortunately it was dry this year but, unfortunately, colder! I set up on Saturday, making two trips to fill five tables; the other five crew members arrived on Sunday morning when, after some re-arranging, we occupied twelve tables with all round access.

Tim Surtell posted SELMEC banners across the tables and at the slip entrance and there was plenty of club literature available, so we were well promoted.

Visitors kept coming all day Sunday; Monday was a bit slow in the morning but picked up well after lunch. Reportedly about 7000 visitors attended over the two days.

Highlights

Tim Surtell's buzz-wire game proved to be an electrifying experience for many visitors, some surviving the tortuous task without penalty!

A boy attempts the Lightning Leap buzz-wire game
A boy attempts the Lightning Leap buzz-wire game

Chris Fry's Konkoly Meccanograph fascinated children and adults alike.

Chris Fry's models
Chris Fry's models

Allen Berman's amazing robotics drew enquiring comments and much interest.

A family watches Alan Berman demonstrate his robot
A family watches Alan Berman demonstrate his robot

Douglas Windibank's suitcase revealed an 'Aladdin's Cave' of modern models.

Douglas Windibank shows off some of his models
Douglas Windibank shows off some of his models

Andrew Couzens' medium sized vehicle and train line-up attracted much attention.

Andrew Couzens' models
Andrew Couzens' models

My London Eye and Rolling Bridge were given another outing with rewarding interest.

A couple admire Alan Wenbourne's model of the London Eye
A couple admire Alan Wenbourne's model of the London Eye

I spy with my bionic eye... Alan Wenbourne's Rolling Bridge!
I spy with my bionic eye… Alan Wenbourne's Rolling Bridge!

I think the team thought the effort and suffering were worthwhile, especially as we had the freedom to visit the dockyard facilities and explore the other events and exhibits.

However, next years attendance may be subject to the weather! (We must be due for a nice Easter — maybe when global warming kicks in?)

An overview of our stand at the festival
An overview of our stand at the festival

 


» This article appeared in the June 2013 issue of SELMEC News.

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