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newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival

Cllr 30 Jun 10 - 10:01 AM
Leadfingers 30 Jun 10 - 10:07 AM
Crow Sister (off with the fairies) 30 Jun 10 - 10:40 AM
Cllr 30 Jun 10 - 10:54 AM
Dave Earl 30 Jun 10 - 11:07 AM
Richard Bridge 30 Jun 10 - 11:18 AM
Leadfingers 30 Jun 10 - 11:29 AM
Ruth Archer 30 Jun 10 - 11:43 AM
Leadfingers 30 Jun 10 - 11:46 AM
Richard Bridge 30 Jun 10 - 11:56 AM
Ruth Archer 30 Jun 10 - 12:11 PM
Ruth Archer 30 Jun 10 - 12:14 PM
Leadfingers 30 Jun 10 - 12:34 PM
GUEST,Derek Schofield 30 Jun 10 - 12:42 PM
Steve Hunt 30 Jun 10 - 12:45 PM
John J 30 Jun 10 - 12:47 PM
Cllr 30 Jun 10 - 06:09 PM
Cllr 30 Jun 10 - 06:11 PM
Ruth Archer 30 Jun 10 - 06:38 PM
Noreen 30 Jun 10 - 07:01 PM
JohnB 30 Jun 10 - 07:15 PM
Tug the Cox 30 Jun 10 - 07:28 PM
Leadfingers 30 Jun 10 - 07:35 PM
Tattie Bogle 30 Jun 10 - 07:45 PM
Cllr 30 Jun 10 - 07:49 PM
Ruth Archer 30 Jun 10 - 07:53 PM
GUEST,Gadaffi 01 Jul 10 - 04:51 AM
Dave Earl 01 Jul 10 - 05:29 AM
GUEST,Phot at work 01 Jul 10 - 05:35 AM
mattkeen 01 Jul 10 - 08:37 AM
John J 01 Jul 10 - 10:08 AM
Cllr 01 Jul 10 - 10:18 AM
Tug the Cox 01 Jul 10 - 11:44 AM
VirginiaTam 01 Jul 10 - 12:57 PM
Dave Earl 01 Jul 10 - 01:03 PM
VirginiaTam 01 Jul 10 - 02:02 PM
Girl Friday 01 Jul 10 - 03:58 PM
vectis 01 Jul 10 - 05:51 PM
Herga Kitty 02 Jul 10 - 03:09 AM
GUEST,Ivy 02 Jul 10 - 09:32 AM
Leadfingers 02 Jul 10 - 10:32 AM
Surreysinger 02 Jul 10 - 11:48 AM
Ruth Archer 02 Jul 10 - 11:55 AM
Tattie Bogle 02 Jul 10 - 12:48 PM
Cllr 05 Jul 10 - 01:42 AM
Ruth Archer 10 Jul 10 - 08:27 AM
Leadfingers 10 Jul 10 - 10:36 AM
Cllr 11 Jul 10 - 08:03 PM
vectis 12 Jul 10 - 07:46 AM
GUEST,LDT 12 Jul 10 - 11:24 AM
Cllr 13 Jul 10 - 02:42 PM
Desert Dancer 13 Jul 10 - 03:40 PM
GUEST,Fred Snout 16 Jul 10 - 05:47 PM
Jane Bird 16 Jul 10 - 07:03 PM
Tattie Bogle 16 Jul 10 - 08:31 PM
JHW 17 Jul 10 - 04:35 AM
Mr Red 17 Jul 10 - 04:45 AM
Leadfingers 17 Jul 10 - 06:20 AM
PercyBysshe 17 Jul 10 - 06:48 AM
Cllr 19 Jul 10 - 01:44 PM
Jane Bird 19 Jul 10 - 02:22 PM
Cllr 20 Jul 10 - 01:13 AM
Lady Policeman 20 Jul 10 - 06:44 PM
Pierre Le Chapeau 21 Jul 10 - 01:46 PM
GUEST,guest - Greenguy 21 Jul 10 - 04:00 PM
Leadfingers 21 Jul 10 - 04:32 PM
Tattie Bogle 21 Jul 10 - 05:13 PM
GUEST,Greenguy 23 Jul 10 - 12:29 PM
GUEST,Greenguy 23 Jul 10 - 12:31 PM
Herga Kitty 23 Jul 10 - 01:55 PM
VirginiaTam 23 Jul 10 - 02:00 PM
Ruth Archer 23 Jul 10 - 02:45 PM
Herga Kitty 23 Jul 10 - 04:20 PM
Tattie Bogle 24 Jul 10 - 08:21 AM
The Barden of England 24 Jul 10 - 08:44 AM
VirginiaTam 24 Jul 10 - 08:49 AM
Tattie Bogle 24 Jul 10 - 09:27 AM
The Barden of England 24 Jul 10 - 09:38 AM
Herga Kitty 24 Jul 10 - 12:08 PM
GUEST,Greenguy 24 Jul 10 - 12:17 PM
Tattie Bogle 24 Jul 10 - 03:18 PM
Herga Kitty 24 Jul 10 - 03:53 PM
Steve in Sidmouth 24 Jul 10 - 05:59 PM
SussexCarole 24 Jul 10 - 06:25 PM
Tattie Bogle 24 Jul 10 - 10:33 PM
Jane Bird 25 Jul 10 - 08:10 AM
GUEST 25 Jul 10 - 09:12 AM
Richard Bridge 25 Jul 10 - 03:05 PM
JHW 25 Jul 10 - 04:47 PM
Tattie Bogle 25 Jul 10 - 08:31 PM
Girl Friday 25 Jul 10 - 08:34 PM
Ruth Archer 26 Jul 10 - 02:39 AM
Ruth Archer 26 Jul 10 - 02:47 AM
Ruth Archer 26 Jul 10 - 02:49 AM
VirginiaTam 26 Jul 10 - 02:49 AM
The Barden of England 26 Jul 10 - 03:11 AM
Richard Bridge 26 Jul 10 - 06:25 AM
Lizzie Cornish 1 26 Jul 10 - 07:26 AM
Cllr 26 Jul 10 - 08:02 AM
Cllr 26 Jul 10 - 08:03 AM
The Barden of England 26 Jul 10 - 08:23 AM
GUEST,Girl Friday 26 Jul 10 - 10:21 AM
VirginiaTam 26 Jul 10 - 02:31 PM
GUEST 26 Jul 10 - 04:01 PM
JHW 26 Jul 10 - 04:40 PM
Herga Kitty 26 Jul 10 - 06:56 PM
Richard Bridge 27 Jul 10 - 03:32 AM
Cllr 27 Jul 10 - 08:55 AM
mattkeen 27 Jul 10 - 11:09 AM
Richard Bridge 27 Jul 10 - 05:26 PM
Herga Kitty 27 Jul 10 - 05:57 PM
VirginiaTam 27 Jul 10 - 06:25 PM
Leadfingers 27 Jul 10 - 06:46 PM
The Barden of England 28 Jul 10 - 01:25 AM
VirginiaTam 28 Jul 10 - 02:24 AM
Herga Kitty 28 Jul 10 - 02:36 AM
Ruth Archer 28 Jul 10 - 03:14 AM
GUEST,Ralphie 28 Jul 10 - 03:23 AM
GUEST,The Barden of England sans cookie 28 Jul 10 - 03:45 AM
Leadfingers 28 Jul 10 - 05:56 AM
GUEST 28 Jul 10 - 06:23 AM
Richard Bridge 28 Jul 10 - 08:00 AM
Noreen 28 Jul 10 - 05:05 PM
VirginiaTam 28 Jul 10 - 05:43 PM
Noreen 28 Jul 10 - 06:01 PM
Richard Bridge 28 Jul 10 - 06:16 PM
Surreysinger 28 Jul 10 - 07:16 PM
Steve in Sidmouth 28 Jul 10 - 07:29 PM
Herga Kitty 29 Jul 10 - 02:35 AM
Leadfingers 29 Jul 10 - 03:45 AM
Mary Humphreys 29 Jul 10 - 04:00 AM
GUEST,Ralphie 29 Jul 10 - 04:17 AM
Cllr 29 Jul 10 - 05:26 AM
GUEST,Ralphie 29 Jul 10 - 06:57 AM
Surreysinger 29 Jul 10 - 07:18 AM
nickp 30 Jul 10 - 06:46 AM
GUEST, Fido 30 Jul 10 - 07:45 PM
GUEST,GUEST: Va Tam - cookie crumbled 01 Aug 10 - 01:50 PM
Richard Bridge 01 Aug 10 - 04:49 PM
the lemonade lady 01 Aug 10 - 05:33 PM
Richard Bridge 01 Aug 10 - 06:54 PM
Richard Bridge 01 Aug 10 - 06:59 PM
Tug the Cox 02 Aug 10 - 09:28 AM
Ruth Archer 02 Aug 10 - 10:22 AM
Richard Bridge 02 Aug 10 - 11:26 AM
Tug the Cox 02 Aug 10 - 01:21 PM
Richard Bridge 02 Aug 10 - 04:39 PM
Ruth Archer 03 Aug 10 - 04:30 AM
Ruth Archer 04 Aug 10 - 03:53 AM
Richard Bridge 04 Aug 10 - 07:14 AM
Ruth Archer 04 Aug 10 - 10:52 AM
Richard Bridge 04 Aug 10 - 05:07 PM
Richard Bridge 04 Aug 10 - 05:31 PM
the lemonade lady 05 Aug 10 - 04:07 AM
Leadfingers 05 Aug 10 - 04:53 AM
VirginiaTam 08 Aug 10 - 11:48 AM
GUEST,Essex Girl 09 Aug 10 - 07:02 AM
Tug the Cox 09 Aug 10 - 07:54 AM
VirginiaTam 09 Aug 10 - 08:37 AM
GUEST,Essex Girl 09 Aug 10 - 09:04 AM
VirginiaTam 09 Aug 10 - 09:17 AM
Herga Kitty 09 Aug 10 - 12:35 PM
Herga Kitty 09 Aug 10 - 01:09 PM
Noreen 09 Aug 10 - 01:50 PM
Richard Bridge 09 Aug 10 - 02:39 PM
Noreen 09 Aug 10 - 03:09 PM
Richard Bridge 09 Aug 10 - 03:15 PM
Noreen 09 Aug 10 - 03:39 PM
Richard Bridge 09 Aug 10 - 03:41 PM
Noreen 09 Aug 10 - 04:02 PM
Tattie Bogle 09 Aug 10 - 08:03 PM
GUEST,Folkiedave 10 Aug 10 - 04:59 AM
Mr Red 10 Aug 10 - 05:45 AM
Ruth Archer 10 Aug 10 - 08:30 AM
VirginiaTam 10 Aug 10 - 01:01 PM
VirginiaTam 10 Aug 10 - 01:02 PM
Old Vermin 10 Aug 10 - 01:26 PM
JHW 10 Aug 10 - 01:30 PM
GUEST,Folkiedave 10 Aug 10 - 03:27 PM
Tug the Cox 11 Aug 10 - 09:21 AM
GUEST,Derek Schofield 11 Aug 10 - 12:26 PM
GUEST,Derek Schofield 11 Aug 10 - 12:34 PM
Steve in Sidmouth 12 Aug 10 - 04:55 AM
Steve in Sidmouth 12 Aug 10 - 05:03 AM
GUEST,folkiedave 12 Aug 10 - 06:19 AM
GUEST,Derek Schofield 12 Aug 10 - 07:32 AM
Steve in Sidmouth 13 Aug 10 - 05:03 AM
Ruth Archer 13 Aug 10 - 07:04 AM
Bloke from Poole 13 Aug 10 - 08:05 AM
Rumncoke 13 Aug 10 - 08:42 AM
Ruth Archer 13 Aug 10 - 09:01 AM
GUEST,LDT 13 Aug 10 - 09:33 AM
Steve in Sidmouth 13 Aug 10 - 10:39 AM
Steve in Sidmouth 13 Aug 10 - 10:54 AM
GUEST,LDT 13 Aug 10 - 11:13 AM
GUEST,LDT 13 Aug 10 - 11:25 AM
GUEST,cardboard cutout 13 Aug 10 - 12:00 PM
VirginiaTam 13 Aug 10 - 01:07 PM
Steve in Sidmouth 14 Aug 10 - 08:37 AM
Steve in Sidmouth 14 Aug 10 - 08:45 AM
VirginiaTam 14 Aug 10 - 10:23 AM
GUEST,folkiedave 14 Aug 10 - 01:47 PM
Steve in Sidmouth 15 Aug 10 - 04:06 AM
Steve in Sidmouth 22 Aug 10 - 06:43 PM
JHW 23 Aug 10 - 09:42 AM
Girl Friday 23 Aug 10 - 10:23 AM
GUEST,LDT 23 Aug 10 - 10:28 AM
Steve in Sidmouth 24 Aug 10 - 06:16 PM
Steve in Sidmouth 24 Aug 10 - 06:25 PM
Steve in Sidmouth 24 Aug 10 - 06:35 PM
JHW 25 Aug 10 - 05:40 AM
GUEST,LDT 25 Aug 10 - 05:56 AM
Leadfingers 25 Aug 10 - 07:02 AM
Steve in Sidmouth 25 Aug 10 - 11:12 AM
Bloke from Poole 26 Aug 10 - 07:24 AM
JHW 26 Aug 10 - 05:22 PM
GUEST,LDT 26 Aug 10 - 05:30 PM
Steve in Sidmouth 08 Sep 10 - 12:32 PM
Girl Friday 08 Sep 10 - 01:44 PM
GUEST,Guest. Joan Crump 08 Sep 10 - 02:16 PM
VirginiaTam 08 Sep 10 - 03:13 PM
GUEST,Joan Crump 08 Sep 10 - 05:30 PM
GUEST,Girl Friday 08 Sep 10 - 06:55 PM
VirginiaTam 09 Sep 10 - 02:48 AM
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Subject: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 10:01 AM

Some friends are coming over from the States (they are folkies) and they are staying with me for the folk festival. One of them asked if there was a newbie guide to Sidmouth. Hmmmm i thought i havn't seen one so lets throw it open to Mudcat.
Also perhaps including a series of not to be missed things for this year.
Not long now... Cllr


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 10:07 AM

Mike - I would have thought you knew enough about it to give any pointers that were needed !


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Crow Sister (off with the fairies)
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 10:40 AM

Good idea for a thread. There are other newbs going this year too..


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 10:54 AM

leadfingers, ahh but a different perspective is always useful..


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Dave Earl
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 11:07 AM

Send 'em to the Box Office for info on events and tickets.

Individuals therein are the fond of all wisdom doanchano.

Dave


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 11:18 AM

As a virgin last year I found surely all they need is a map with the relevant pub/hotel locations and a list of what pub does what. Or do they want to sit and listen?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 11:29 AM

Thats a good point Mike ,but to follow on from Richard's comment do they want to Participate or just listen , and then , what sort of thing ?
A Dancer would not want to spend all their time in he Bedford , the Newt or the Radway , and an Irish Box Player would not fit in the Radway very well either . And a Dylan fan would feel somewhat out of place in the Volunteer !


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 11:43 AM

Anyone mind if I jump in...?

If it were me, these are the things I wouldn't want to miss:

Cordelia's Dad reunion
In Search of Nic Jones
Andy Cutting and Friends
Roy Bailey's Peace Concert
Bagpuss (performance and workshop)
Silent Disco & Ceilidh
NuCeilidh at the Blackmore
Blowzabella
The new folk quiz, Never Mind the Bandoggs
The Anne & Frank Warner Collection, presented by Jeff Warner, special guest Tim Eriksen
The Global Local/World on Your Doorstep concerts in the Methodist Church
Tim Eriksen's Shape Note workshop
John Howson's Sidmouth Traditions concerts, especially Travelling People on Sunday (featuring the Leggs, the Orchards, Sheila Stewart and Thomas McCarthy)
Sara Grey's 70th Birthday concert
Alistair Anderson's Steel Skies workshop series
Taffy Thomas's new story cycle about Rosslyn Chapel

How's that to be going on with...?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 11:46 AM

Leaving the 'Official' programme to one side here's a few 'Fringe' events that I imagine will be going on this year ! And I DONT Claim this as THE Definitive list !

The Radway - The English Tune for the whole festival , very little singing (If ANY)

The Volunteer - Leaning VERY Hard on 'The Tradition' - Lots of song and a fair few Intruments

The Bedford - Mixed session in the Main Bar , with a tendency to Morris Tunes and Melodions - Old Timey in the Other bar - All sorts of 'Good Old Boys' and variuos smaller things as well as Official events .

The Swan - Mixed Sessions , mostly in the garden if the weather is permitting !

The Newt - IF you can find it - Mixed session all week (On the programme as 'Gerry Milne and friends' I think . Dancers from York Steps lable to take refuge there if it rains !

The Faulkner - Singaround format , some tunes , all sorts of song .

The Tudor Rose - Another mixed session

The Ship - Seems to have been taken over by a lot of VERY competent younger musicians of late !

And the Yacht Club has a a varied selection of music too !


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 11:56 AM

That's a useful list Terry, but certainly on the opening Friday last year I as a virgin found the Bedford was only mildly squeezy.

First Saturday afternoon last year the back bar of the Swan got very Americana-contemporary-song.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 12:11 PM

"Leaving the 'Official' programme to one side"

Well, as these threads get taken over a bit by a few people whose primary interest is the fringe, thereby becoming a bit irrelevant to anyone else, I hope you'll indulge me the odd intervention... :)

Mike's friends are over from America, and I'm sure they (and anyone else coming to the festival for the first time) would want a good balance of information about both the fringe and the "official" programme.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 12:14 PM

I think you'll find that those "VERY competent young musicians" more or less abandoned The Ship to start the session at the Tudor, because the landlords offered them free beer (and possibly food) to sit and play all afternoon. Nice work if you can get it!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 12:34 PM

Thanks for that Ruth - And I was leaving the Official side to those who know - as you are aware I am ONLY a Fringe man .
There will no doubt be other sessions - It seems if two or three people go into a quiet pub in Sidmouth and ask politely they will be made welcome , if not actually plied with ale !
And any corrections to my list are welcome - Its purely my own perception of what goes on .


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Derek Schofield
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 12:42 PM

I think the festival has a website somewhere ... :-) probably lots about the festival on there :-)
Derek


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve Hunt
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 12:45 PM

Martin Simpson Band + Nancy Kerr & James Fagan will be definitely "a good 'un," of epic proportions, and I would also advise your friends to go and see Nancy Wallace.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: John J
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 12:47 PM

Have they got festival tickets or are they doing the fringe?

JJ


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 06:09 PM

see my list of unmissable is
Middle bar pub crawl wednesday before festival starts lots of pubs ending in middle bar
opening night Friday middle bar Anchor pub
Saturday (black tot 40th anniversary) anchor TBC poss in middle bar Anchor pub
Tuesday Shanty session Middle bar Anchor and away team (see other thread)
Thursday sillier song session followed by sing in the sea starts middle bar Anchor
Thursday (cont) Doom gloom and despondancy session - not in middle bar
Friday afternoon not the ceilidh in the ford
Friday night Parade then returning to middle bar and up to LNE

hmmm i see a theme in my unmissable list...
Cllr


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 06:11 PM

The americans sing, dance- most are in a morris side from Boston, and drink scotch and some play instruments as well. not while drinking scotch though...


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 06:38 PM

lots of good dance workshops and displays this year, Mike. They might enjoy that.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Noreen
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 07:01 PM

I see a pattern emerging there, Mike!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: JohnB
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 07:15 PM

Which side are they with, I may know sowm of them if they have been to Canada.
Jack n the Green from New Hampshire are also planning to be there.
JohnB


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tug the Cox
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 07:28 PM

Yeh, Terry, you miserable old scroat....why leave the Middle bar out of the fringe...I've seen you there, at least at reunions. Newt should come with a 'Henry VIII' warning! I know you didn't claim to be defitive, but the Middle bar has been a fixture for longer than anything on your list.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 07:35 PM

How did I miss The Irish Tune in the Anchor bar ?? and there is that Rabble in the Middle bar Upstairs ! Sorry lads !!(And Lasses)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 07:45 PM

The "working programme" is an essential, from which your friends should be able to find out when/where all the dancey things are on, if not any single malt tastings. It takes a lot of trawling through (usually 700+ items!) but does list things in chronological order, but I usually maage to go through it and mark things with pink asterisks!
Ruth, I can't see any ref on the website to a working programme this year: please tell me there IS going to be one!
And on the Fringe, there's the "Herbaceous Border" with daily dancing/playing on the prom, which Morrisy folk must not miss!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 07:49 PM

I met some of jack in the green when i was in Boston last year for lilac Sunday we were singing together in a bar on the Sunday- the folk and ale was organised by red herring morris which is the team this group belong to. I know the side was went to the London Ale in Toronto earlier this year.

Cllr


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 30 Jun 10 - 07:53 PM

Working programme is just in the finishing stages. Should be on the website next week!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Gadaffi
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 04:51 AM

Someone said earlier, go to the box office and ask. Good idea!

Ask for Flirby or Linda - who have been coming to the festival themselves for years as performers, stewards and punters, and who have husbands who've been heavily involved for as long a time, and they will sympathetically point you in the right direction.

If it's Morris your guests are more interested in, don't forget the marine morris which used to take place on Thursday afternoons in the sea in front of The Marine. I don't know who runs it these days!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Dave Earl
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 05:29 AM

Yes

Those ladies know what happens at Sidmouth and there are others there too if the ladies mentioned happen to be off shift when Cllr's trans-Atlantic chums call.

Ian, July, Jackie, Dave (me),or almost any member of the team really (we sometimes have newbies ourselves).

We will have the full Festival information and we have all been around Sidmouth long enough to know about the fringe things too.

Dave


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Phot at work
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 05:35 AM

Try and avoid the puppy known as Jack..................................................

Wassail!! Chris


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: mattkeen
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 08:37 AM

I think its essential to get lost and wonder into things that you didn't know you were interested in - both programmed and fridge

Nearly all of my fondest memories come from those sort of surprises at Sidmouth


Couple of years ago I didnt know that Methera were playing in the church tilled I wondered past ... it was fantastic. Then that made me go back to the church the next day and have since got really interested in West Gallery stuff


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: John J
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 10:08 AM

Again:

Have they got festival tickets or are they doing the fringe?

JJ


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 10:18 AM

we seem to have moved away slightly from what i asked for as in a newbie guide i included a line on might " INCLUDE a not to be missed list" but more to the point .The idea of a "newbie's guide" was actually along the lines of what someone who's never before been to Sidmouth should know about the festival in general. I know they can ask stewards on arrival but what preperations can they make before they leave USA, again

Think about stuff you now know that made you think, "I wish I had known that last year" when you figured it out.

as they will be doing a mixture of fringe and festival tickets they will e buying individual tickets for events.

thanks again Mike
PS they might even post to this thread to clarify what they want - hint hint


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tug the Cox
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 11:44 AM

mattkeen, i hope it is indeed warm enough to want to walk into the fridge!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 12:57 PM

this newbie would like to know what her stewarding schedule is so she can plan extra curricular activities....


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Dave Earl
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 01:03 PM

VT

I am informed by my contacts that the stewarding rotas are being worked on now and will be sent out very soon

Dave


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 02:02 PM

whoohoo! fingers crossed I can join the shanty pub crawl collecting donations for Sidmouth Lifeboat.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Girl Friday
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 03:58 PM

Thanks for this thread. There has some very useful info, specially the pub list of what happens.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: vectis
Date: 01 Jul 10 - 05:51 PM

If they want a good session of standard tunes becoming more eclectic as the evening progresses then the siling club upstairs in the evenings is THE place to be. Get there for about 7-7.30 if you want a seat.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 02 Jul 10 - 03:09 AM

If you're a singer and want to be sure of getting a song, you'll be very welcome in the Faulkner Bar of the Royal York and Faulkner Hotel between 10.30am and 12.30pm Sunday to Friday. Of course if you're staying at Cllr's abode you probably won't have got up by then....

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Ivy
Date: 02 Jul 10 - 09:32 AM

Hi, one of the newbies in question here (and I dance with Pipe Dream Morris). I'm wondering especially about what to bring with me. For example, how much of my time should I expect to be spending indoors vs. outdoors? (If outdoors, I will plan for sun, rain, etc.) Does the indoor stuff tend to be so crowded that it gets very warm? (Obviously any dancing probably will, but what about the singing and listening stuff?) Are the dancehalls picky about the type of shoes you're wearing?

Anything else I should think about bringing, like "everyone has their own tankard"?

Thanks much.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 02 Jul 10 - 10:32 AM

A personal drinking vessel IS useful as you are not stuck with floppy plastic and dont have to empty a glass if you decide to move elsewhere .
The Temperature is INFINITELY variable ( Remember , this IS England) so a Light Waterproof IS a good isea , and some of the venues DO get a bit Hot and Sticky as the rain is often quite warm ! LOL


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Surreysinger
Date: 02 Jul 10 - 11:48 AM

> how much of my time should I expect to be spending indoors vs. outdoors?

That's a bit like asking "How long is a piece of string",since you haven't said what you intend to be doing Ivy - so it's difficult to make any real comment. There are usually over 700 official events, not to mention all the unofficial stuff,both indoors and outdoors, so it's really up to you how much time you spend exposed to the elements or not. It may also make a difference if you're intending to be whizzing around to different venues in the town, or staying put in one place.
Impossible to answer :-)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 02 Jul 10 - 11:55 AM

there's also a big range of indoor venues, from small-scale workshops spaces holding maybe 30 people, up to 1000-seater marquees. And dance venues range from church halls to marquees. I don't think they're too fussy about footwear so long as you are comfortable and not wearing anything silly to dance in, like flip flops.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 02 Jul 10 - 12:48 PM

Thanks for the news about the working programme Ruth.

Don't forget your swimming costume! "Come on in, the water's lovely when you get used to it": the beach is pebbly except at Jacob's Ladder beach at low tide, so some beach shoes are useful too! There's also a nice indoor swimming pool in the town near the Box Office and main marquee at "The Ham".
If travelling transatlantic, think twice before bringing any expensive instruments, unless you're playing professionally and really must use your own (and then be well insured!). Might be cheaper to buy or borrow on arrival and then sell on/hand back when you leave!
Yes, and clothes, something to cover every eventuality that English alleged summer can throw at you!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 05 Jul 10 - 01:42 AM

Bring plenty of currency- we use something called "beer tokens" it like normal UK money but it only tends to get spent on alcohol during folk week.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 10 Jul 10 - 08:27 AM

Full festival programme now available on the festival website!

sidmouth home page


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 10 Jul 10 - 10:36 AM

Working Link


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 11 Jul 10 - 08:03 PM

refresh


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: vectis
Date: 12 Jul 10 - 07:46 AM

Thanks for the link. I can now sit with a highlighter and plan my week, including not going to events that are not happening


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,LDT
Date: 12 Jul 10 - 11:24 AM

[quote]"I think its essential to get lost and wonder into things that you didn't know you were interested in - both programmed and fridge"[/quote]

That made me chuckle a the mental image of people having a folk fest in a fridge.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 13 Jul 10 - 02:42 PM

yes but if you have it in a fridge don't you get the cold shoulder?
cllr


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 13 Jul 10 - 03:40 PM

What constitutes "NuCeilidh", as opposed to any other flavo(u)r? And "Transatlantic Ceilidh"?

I think I understand "Contra Ceilidh", given the "best of both worlds" subtitle...

~ Becky in Long Beach
(future newbie, someday)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Fred Snout
Date: 16 Jul 10 - 05:47 PM

I'm planning to go to Sidmouth for the first time this year. I found some very helpful stuff in this thread – thanks.

A few things I am wondering about…

I'm intending to buy a full week season ticket which "gives access to all events, subject to space". Based on past performance, any idea how likely I am to get grumpy that I can't get in to the events I particularly want to see?

Several contributors mention the fringe. Is there even more stuff going on than is in the Festival Programme and if so how do you find out about it?

Is the campsite fairly civilised? Is getting there and back easy?

Any tips on eating reasonably healthily, reasonably cheaply?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Jane Bird
Date: 16 Jul 10 - 07:03 PM

Desert Dancer - NuCeilidh is more complex dances but with ceilidh attitude, I understand. I'm waiting to find out about Transatlantic Ceilidh.

Ivy, re shoes - wear what ever you find most comfortable to dance in, as believe that most venues are pretty relxed about footware. The dance venues vary from church halls to wooden dance floors in marquees. When dancing at The Anchor Gardens you're outside and in fact you're in a car park, so trainers works best for me there and anything more delicate might not withstand tarmac.

Tankards are a matter of personal choice. A significant minority of people at Sidmouth do use them, but personally I prefer the taste of beer to the taste of peuter.

Fred, there are one of two venues that do have a reputation for getting very full. For example The Manor Pavillion, The Bedford (for concerts) and sometimes The Ham. The first two are relatively small venues, and especially if there's a terrifically popular act on getting in can be an issue. The Ham, on the other hand, is massive - round about 1,000, I think. In general, if you're prepared to queue (at least 30 mins in advance) you're often okay, but it always depends on what else is on at the same time, what the weather's like etc. Getting into the dances is rarely a problem. The good thing about Sidmouth, though, is that if something is full, you often don't have to go far to find something else instead.

If there's something you really, really, really don't want to miss, go and check out the venue first and ask advice from the stewards. They generally get a reasonable feel for what queuing might be like, but it is sometimes hard to predict.

The campsite is very civilised and it's about 25 mins brisk walk from the seafront. There's pavement most of the way now, but nearer to the campsite you have to walk on the road. Torches and reflective stuff (even if only one of those snap-on wrist bands) a v important at night. Some people bring bikes - it's perfectly cyclable. There's a bus running 3-4 times an hour (mostly) as well. The journey back up to the campsite is up the hill (gentle incline) but if you've had a good enough day you won't notice by night time :-)

Tips on cheap, reasonable healthy eating: rolls/oat cakes and cheese, humous etc in town from the grocers / supermarket. White Horse Cafe and Prospect are the chippies (not healthy, exactly), and I'd recommend White Horse as better chips and cheaper, but Prospect is better presented. Gnesha's Wholefoods (my favourite Sidmouth food place) makes the best salad, houmous and falafels around, plus they do a good line in herbs, spices, cakes and yoghurt coated dried fruit.

There you go, that's my two penn'th. I hope anyone coming to Sidmouth for the first time enjoys it as much as I did and still do! I've met so many people and made very good friends as a result of Sidmouth. I'm glad I've got the habbit!

See you in a few weeks time!
Cheers, Jane


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 16 Jul 10 - 08:31 PM

Jane has pretty well answered all Fred's questions, but just to add that Sidmouth has several very good bakeries, a small market hall and a great greengrocer's.
And don't forget the wonderful fresh fish and seafood at Bagwell's, very close to the Ham marquee (tucked away behind the public loos!. The prawn and crab sandwiches are a real treat!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: JHW
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 04:35 AM

As a newbie I was advised to buy a full season ticket so I could try anything.
This was very good advice and I would offer it in turn but I have never bought one since. Partly because I go for such as are in Leadfingers 30th June list plus absolutely the Middle Bar singers in the Anchor ie non ticket events.
Partly because however good a show might be (see Ruth Archer 30th June list) I won't spend half my day queuing to get in which you may well have to do even though you have a ticket and you might still not get in!   
(Plus I struggle with the heat. Last time I had a Ham marquee ticket I came out and listened outside.)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Mr Red
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 04:45 AM

Read all of the above.

After 3 years I would not be considered a newbie but Terry mentions 2 or 3 session/pubs I haven't any cognizance/recollection of.

Take three gold (make that Silver) stars Mr Leadfingers.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 06:20 AM

Praise indeed Mr Red !


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: PercyBysshe
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 06:48 AM

This newbie now has her stewarding rota, has engineered a couple of swaps and is very excited (and also quite dizzy from looking at the programme!)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 19 Jul 10 - 01:44 PM

ten days to go! well nine for me but ten if you are seeing Ron Shuttleworth on the Thursday


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Jane Bird
Date: 19 Jul 10 - 02:22 PM

Ron Shuttleworth?

Don't you mean his distant cousin, John? :-)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 20 Jul 10 - 01:13 AM

Of course


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Lady Policeman
Date: 20 Jul 10 - 06:44 PM

Jane, just to let you and any others that are interested know, the Sidmouth Indoor Market that was situated up the High Street opposite Somerfields, is now The Original Factory Shop. Ganesha Foods has survived the move and is now in the old Clarks shoe shop at the top of Old Fore Street and the Cheese Board delicatessen has also thankfully survived and moved onto the High Street just down from Somerfields. (Cheapest milk in Sidmouth at 78p per litre!). Quite a few other shops have closed and reopened in some form or other and some are being renovated as I type.The Dove is now a surf shop! Lots of changes but still the same old Sidmouth looking forward to welcoming newbies and oldies to it's festival!

Kath


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Pierre Le Chapeau
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 01:46 PM

after reading all this this lot I wanna to be in at least six places at the same time and Iam a Sidmouth Virgin this year too.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,guest - Greenguy
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 04:00 PM

I was wondering about session etiquette for the fringe singing sessions, such as that at the Middle Bar. I expect that etiquette may vary by session, but any information would be appreciated on the following:

1) Are there songs that are either officially or unofficially reserved for certain occasions? I mean something along the lines of saving "Leave Her Johnny" or "The Seamen's Hymn" for the final song of a session.

2) Are there songs that are either officially or unofficially reserved for certain people to lead? Here I mean something along the lines of, "Old Fred always leads that one, so the rest of us leave it to him".

3) Are there songs that are just not sung? Here I mean something along the lines of, "Please, lord, not *that* one, we're all sick of *that* one."

4) What about ending a song with a repeated chorus? Is that common? Left to the discretion of whoever is leading the song? Frowned upon?

Thanks in advance for all help!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 04:32 PM

I CAN speak for the Newt - Ita a MIXED session . Songs AND Tunes - IF you dont want anyone to join in , SAY SO , other wise we tend to play along ! And NOT to drown out the singer !
We (Gerry and I) are there to fill gaps and maintain SOME semblance of order , so we try NOT to let one person or group take over !
Otherwise its just be polite and try NOT to start a song when someone else has just got going - There are one or two who are quieter than me !!
The Middle Bar has Twig Rule - When you are passed the twig its your turn ! And there is usually a board witha list of Fines - DONT Sing The Wild Rover is usually top of the list
Not sure how some of the other sessions run - No Doubt others will say whats what !


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 21 Jul 10 - 05:13 PM

Yeah, Wild Rover in the Middle Bar) attracts a £5 fine.....unless you can do it in German (as someone did one year and got away with it) or maybe do the real trad version )dfiferent tune) without the "no, nay, never" bits. Mobile phones going off also attract fines as do such things as over-acting, "crap swaying" etc, etc.

The strange thing about the twig is that it is "driven" from "The Bench", so just when you think it might be your turn next, it goes off in the opposite direction. But if you hang around for long enough/get in early enough you should get at least one song in per session, and ample opportunity to join in any choruses, some of which will be "Standing choruses" when everyone ......stands!

Don't think there's anyone who will seriously get the hump if you do "their song", and you don't necessarliy have to keep "leaving songs" to the end of the session as it will probably not be you singing at the end of the session anyway! (I have sung the "older" version of "Auld Lang Syne" in the middle of a session, on the grounds that it's more about enjoying each others' company than going away!

In the Bedford, a quiet word with the session host that you have a quiet voice and would like to sing usually results in him bellowing "Quiet! (Lady)Singer on!" and it usually works!

Some of the Trad sessions are a bit more exclusive: i.e. don't ask you to sing unless they know you. I was quietly killing myself laughing to be introduced as a "new singer" at a late night session, when I ahd been singing for over 50 years!

And Terry, I'll give the Newt a try this year!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Greenguy
Date: 23 Jul 10 - 12:29 PM

Thanks to Leadfingers and Tattie Bogle for the useful information.

As a Sidmouth newbie who wishes to lead a song here and there, but also wants to be sure to comply with local custom, this is really valuable information to have. By the way, I'm one of Cllr's friends from the states, and the one who asked him about a "newbie's guide". This sort of thing is part of what I was hoping to learn.


Tattie Bogle said:
"Some of the Trad sessions are a bit more exclusive: i.e.
   don't ask you to sing unless they know you."

So is it common for you to need to be asked to sing, as opposed to just following the general politeness rules that Leadfinger described for the Newt's session?

And, when an invitation is required to start a song, is there generally either a passed token (such as the Middle Bar twig) or an explicit introduction? The former ought to be pretty obvious and so easy to follow, while the latter would make it clear with whom I should check in if I want to sing. If, on the other hand, there are sings where you need an invitation but not an introduction/token, then that could be confusing to someone who doesn't need the room quieted.


Leadfingers wrote:
"DONT Sing The Wild Rover"

Got it, and no problem. Any others songs that make people groan? People aren't sick of hearing "Barrett's Privateers" or "What Shall We Do With a Drunken Sailor"?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Greenguy
Date: 23 Jul 10 - 12:31 PM

I wrote:
People aren't sick of hearing "Barrett's Privateers" or "What Shall We Do With a Drunken Sailor"?

*Not*, I should point out, that I had been considering leading either of those two songs.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 23 Jul 10 - 01:55 PM

Greenguy - hope to see you in the Middle Bar and possibly even in the Faulkner bar sessions. The reason for the fines in the Anchor is to raise money for the festival so it's quite acceptable to sing TWR if you're happy to pay the fine! And it was noticeable, when the Middle Bar singers were made to sing TWR to the tune of Away in a Manger at the Wareham Wail as a forfeit a few years ago, that the MBS all knew the words all the way through....

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 23 Jul 10 - 02:00 PM

Can stewards (it's our first time too) set up caravan on Thursday 29th? We wanted to arrive day before reporting for duty so we can set up and go grocery shopping and stuff.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 23 Jul 10 - 02:45 PM

Tam: yes. Campsite open from Wednesday.

Off to Sidders - see you all there!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 23 Jul 10 - 04:20 PM

Tam - and, if you've set up on Thursday, there will be singing in the Anchor on Thursday evening and Friday lunchtime, hopefully before you have any stewarding duties!

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 08:21 AM

Greenguy, I think you'll find the vast majority of sessions are NOT by invitation, but they all vary. With the Middle Bar it's the twig-holder. At the Bedford and the Swan it's mainly "jump in" when you can. At others it may be "round the room" (Woodlands?)or the session host may indicate how things will go. At Rosie's evening one at the Faulkner, she takes names in a wee book as you arrive, then usually tells you when your turn is coming up. It used to be "by invitation" at the Volunteer, but that may have changed - please someone advise - but I think if you tell the host you'd like to sing they'll fit you in. (And same for the late night singing session in the back room at the Bedford).
Leadfingers and Kitty can tell what the system is in their respective sessions.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: The Barden of England
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 08:44 AM

We'll be in The Bedford on Thursday too Tam, then Friday onwards. Greenguy - as Tattie Bogle says, the Bedford is 'jump in' when nobody else is doing something but not when someone has just started.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 08:49 AM

Well I may not be doing much singing. I am not a jump in kind of girl. Always respectfully wait for others and then miss my chance. Not a biggie if I don't get to sing. I get as much or more from listening.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 09:27 AM

Hi JB, I should have also said that you are very good at "facilitating" the session ANd giving everyone a fair crack o' the whip!
DO NOT - UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES - HAVE YOUR MOBILE PHONE AUDIBLY ON DURING JB'S SESSIONS!!
(It also incurs a fine in the Middle Bar.)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: The Barden of England
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 09:38 AM

L.O.L. - Danged mobile phones :-)
John Barden


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 12:08 PM

The sessions Tim Edwards and I run in the Faulkner generally go round the room, so everyone who wants to will get a chance to sing, but we might hop around a bit if we know some people have to leave early for an event or stewarding, or if we're about to get a whole run of one gender or singer/ guitarist/ songwriters....

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Greenguy
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 12:17 PM

Thanks to all for the great information. I'm looking forward to all the great singing, and to meeting some of you fine folks.

Meanwhile, here's one rather specific question about the "sillier song session" and the "doom gloom and despondency session", mentioned earlier in the thread by Cllr; should songs for each of these be specifically nautical/maritime?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 03:18 PM

No, anything goes for both.
The guys on the bench in the Middle bar usually have some placards which, in a silly and light-hearted way judge the degree of silliness (no prizes!). So the sillier the better: and it is followed by the procession into the sea, so bring your swimming gear that day!
Doom and Gloom is conducted in a very solemn atmosphere, but the songs are usually more of the black tragi-comedy type than wrist-slitting ballads. Anyone who laughs gets removed from the room for several minutes! Wear black!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 03:53 PM

Yes, Trish, but don't forget that the youngest ever winner of the DG&D workshop (Mudcat's Shady Lady - while too young to observe the traditional custom of buying the judges a drink afterwards)won with a completely straight and gloomy version of the Unquiet Grave!

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 05:59 PM

Quote: "Jane, just to let you and any others that are interested know, the Sidmouth Indoor Market that was situated up the High Street opposite Somerfields, is now The Original Factory Shop. Ganesha Foods has survived the move and is now in the old Clarks shoe shop at the top of Old Fore Street and the Cheese Board delicatessen has also thankfully survived and moved onto the High Street just down from Somerfields."

Anyone looking for Somerfield had better look for Coop instead....and the Factory Shop sells mainly low grade rubbish. If you want an upmarket shopping experience try Waitrose. And you can park!

Anyone wholly new to Sidmouth should view photos on my website - a picture paints a thousand words and for some reason my site is not listed on the official website as a source of further information. This is despite it has far more info on many topics than does the official site.

here are the links: some of last years photos from my website

travel info: buses and other useful travel info including the only remaining petrol station in Sidmouth

One of the major changes this year is axing of the afternoon social dance - there were problems last year with House Full at some dances (although others were not full) and so this year may be tricky. Out of maybe 200 local folk dancers I know I would guess less than 5 buy a season ticket nowadays. Without some decent dance venues my guess is that this aspect of the festival will continue to decline. The Nuceilidh is an interesting idea - can't wait to see if it works (if I can get in..).


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: SussexCarole
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 06:25 PM

We're travelling down to Penzance and stopping off en route for a day at Sidmouth Festival on Tuesday.   I'm a Sidmouth virgin and Andrew hasn't been to Sidmouth Folk Fest since 1970something.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 24 Jul 10 - 10:33 PM

When I said market, I meant the real market in the marketplace (opposite Field's shop!) - or where the dancers go most nights - not the covered area further up the town, which has now turned into somehting like a "Poundstretcher" shop.
Thanks for the correction re Doom and Gloom. Kitty: I did say "usually" but Shadey's worthily winning contribution was "unusually"


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Jane Bird
Date: 25 Jul 10 - 08:10 AM

Going back to the food part of this dicsussion: thanks re update on Co-op. Should have recommended Trumps for cheese, in my ealier post.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Jul 10 - 09:12 AM

with regard to Steve in sidmouth's post about transport, if you talk nicely to the driver of the 157 (Exmouth) Stagecoach bus from the triangle, some will let you off at the campsite.
If coming in from Exeter on the 52, ask for the Ice House Lane bus stop. It is the third one after you pass Waitrose. Ice House Lane to the campsite will be on the other side of the road about 50 metres back. If you ask for core Hill you might end up being dropped off before Waitrose and have a long walk.

For anyone travelling from the southeast, it could be worth noting that Honiton is on the Waterloo-Exeter line, so you can use a Network Railcard to get a reduced fare off-peak.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 25 Jul 10 - 03:05 PM

Without wishing to re-open old wounds, at the Newt it may be wise to start even your quiet songs with a crashing chord if you want to play an introduction, otherwise no-one will notice (said being ignored happened to me 7 times in a row last year, my first at Sidmouth) - and be careful when doing that crashing chord and pressing on, because what may appear to be some old friends having a chat may be a performer doing his performance by telling a story or joke.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: JHW
Date: 25 Jul 10 - 04:47 PM

Unnamed GUEST just above mentions Waitrose in passing. Though still not a big shop if you need a supermarket it's much bigger than Somerfield/Coop albeit well out of town.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 25 Jul 10 - 08:31 PM

And there is a Lidl's up near the Balfour pub, and near the petrol station.
Small Tesco near the Post Office (or in oub terms, fairly near to the Radway)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Girl Friday
Date: 25 Jul 10 - 08:34 PM

Having just looked at all those horrible pictures of mud, I'm very concerned about the campsite. Is it possible to go to the loo without slipping over? I can't get up again if I do.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 02:39 AM

Steve in Sidmouth: have a look at the full festival programme. There is a full programme of social dance this year, including afternoon dances in the Blackmore dance marquee. We are actively trying to find new venues for social dance in order to develop it's presence again, rather than allowing it to decline - there will be feedback forms this year which discuss three potential venues and explain their advantages and drawbacks, and we hope that many social dancers will fill in the forms so that we have a clear view about which to pursue for next year.

Re


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 02:47 AM

Re the campsite: last year was exceptionally bad. But there had been poor weather for many weeks prior to the festival, and part of the problem was that vehicles being used on site before the festival even started had already begun to churn up the ground. This year there are strict rules being enforced about vehicular access to the site both before and during the festival, and the brilliant weather we've had so far looks set to continue, which means that the ground up there is currently good and solid. But the campsite has also been re-designed with dedicated pedestrian areas and a much more thought-through layout which should make it far more user-friendly.

Love


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 02:49 AM

Oop! I was trying to say "Lovely moon over the sea last night!" And the sun is shining today...


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 02:49 AM

Sue

I think you can request a pitch near the loos and showers, per your mobility issues. That is what I plan to do on arrival on Thursday. I am not clear what you have to do first. What I don't know, is do we report to stewards office to get camping pass?   Or do we show up at the camp site with the instructions email?

Must properly read through this stuff tonight.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: The Barden of England
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 03:11 AM

I believe there is matting etc there Sue, plus I think there are disabled loos too.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 06:25 AM

Just for a split second I thought that said "mating".


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 07:26 AM

This is the first year I won't be in Sidmouth, living there that is.
So sad that a place I moved to, *because* of its festival became a place I also moved out of because of its festival (amongst other reasons), due to some of the people who now run it.

Once, I felt like this about it:

'Live' from Sidmouth


Now I feel utter relief to be away from it....from them. I'm sure they're elated with their result though and for that reason alone, it's good to be able to leave Sidmouth far behind...


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 08:02 AM

thank you for your contribution, moving swiftly on


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 08:03 AM

Im going to be down there from Wednesday with most of my american friends arriving between then and saturday morning, thank you for all the positive contributions on this thread
Cllr


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: The Barden of England
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 08:23 AM

Tam - I think it's 'show up with the e-mail'. I'm sure the Stewards at the gate will let you know where to go to get all the 'Stewardy' stuff.

John Barden


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Girl Friday
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 10:21 AM

Thanks for all the help. I'll print off my email too. So glad that you've had great weather there. For a while I thought the S W was getting all the rain that we normally get here. It must be falling on someone!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 02:31 PM

got our rota...

We are working every morning Sunday - Wednesday either in the Manor or Arts (where's Arts?). From 9:30 to 11:15 and then from 11:30 to 12:45. Think I am going to have to do some switching cuz that is a long go with only a 15 minute break. Seem to have all of Thursday free. Even though we specifically said we are leaving on Friday morning for a handfasting in Swansea, we have been booked for duty Friday morning and Friday night. Guess we will have to trade our free Thursday so we don't leave our Friday responsibilities high and dry.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 04:01 PM

The Manor Pavillion and the Arts Centre are the same building, the separate entrances are round the corner from each other.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: JHW
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 04:40 PM

There are Permanent Campsites at Salcombe Regis, Part Thorn and Kingsdown Tail etc. well out of town (4m to Kingsdown Tail, the farthest) but there are Alpha buses from the Byes serving them all day and into the early hours. I certainly won't be using the festival site.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 26 Jul 10 - 06:56 PM

Tam - still hope we can meet up somewhere, even though it sounds as if you won't be able to get to the morning Faulkner singarounds!

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 Jul 10 - 03:32 AM

Probably worth remarking that other countries have climate, but in the UK we have weather.

Met-check and the Met office are disagreed.

Met-check says some rain during Friday afternoon - Met office says some sun during the day on Friday.

Met-check says some very light precipitation Saturday - Met office doesn't

Met-check says gusts of wind up to 22 mph all weekend. Met office says top whack 10 mph.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 27 Jul 10 - 08:55 AM

in the pub i will be dry on the outside and wet on the inside except thursday for the sing in the sea!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: mattkeen
Date: 27 Jul 10 - 11:09 AM

Met Office is easily the more accurate

I am obsessed with trying to accurately predict the weather to faciliate my fishing expeditions - trust me Met Office is the one


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 Jul 10 - 05:26 PM

Ah, split infinitives make it harder to predict anything.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 27 Jul 10 - 05:57 PM

Richard - or do they just make it harder to accurately predict anything?

Kitty (going to quickly look for her coat....)

See some of you in the Anchor on Thursday, I hope!

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 27 Jul 10 - 06:25 PM

how exactly does one get to the campsite?   postcode for google search would be helpful

Also need a map or instructions where the hidden stuff is, like the Newt.

times for these fringe events also helpful. Already know about the Faulkner morning sing a rounds.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 27 Jul 10 - 06:46 PM

Tam - Look on the Festival Website for a map ! The Newt is The New Tavern !


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: The Barden of England
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 01:25 AM

Tam - 'Steve in Sidmouth' gave a link to buses etc which shows where the campsite is but just in case here it is :- http://www.seered.co.uk/busmap.htm. Scroll down and you will see a map. It's in the Bulverton Road before Ice House Lane. Hope to see you tomorrow.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 02:24 AM

Thanks Terry and John. Check - the Newt is the New Tavern, but I still don't see it on the festival map.

Where will I be likely to see you John?

I am getting kind of worried about the camp site. We have to leave Friday morning to go to handfasting Saturday in Swansea. How likely are we to be confined by mud?

Still need times that the fringe sing arounds are happening.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 02:36 AM

Tam - I suspect you'll find John in a bar of the Bedford Hotel on the Esplanade, the main dining room of which is also a concert venue. The New Tavern is in Fore Street between the Esplanade and Dove Lane, and the Anchor is in Old Fore Street. Anchor sings are generally from about 12.30 - 3 and 8-11pm.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 03:14 AM

To reiterate: Sidmouth is currently lovely and dry (and sunny). There is no mud. The weather forecasts predict little or no rain. Mud should not be a problem.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Ralphie
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 03:23 AM

A bit more info on the Volunteer.
The lunchtime session is normally run by George Frampton, (am assuming he's doing it this year?)
It's normally very crowded and tends to focus more on the traditional end of things.
There is usually a pit orchestra of two or three musos, to play the occasional tune. But, as there are so many fine singers, most people only get a chance of one song.
Still it's well worth the trek up the hill at least once during the week, but be advised to get there erly (pre-midday) for any chance of a seat.
Evenings are more relaxed, with a session in the bar, and mainly local bands playing in the garden.
Hope that helps, and enjoy your visit.
Glad the weather is looking good Joanie!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,The Barden of England sans cookie
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 03:45 AM

Herga Litty's right - I'll be in the bar of The Bedford Hotel which is on the sea front at the junction of Station Road and The Esplanade.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 05:56 AM

Map


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 06:23 AM

John B: "I'll be in the bar of The Bedford Hotel which is on the sea front at the junction of Station Road and The Esplanade."

Grand news - I'll see you there

Vince


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 08:00 AM

All the moisture will be INSIDE JOHN!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Noreen
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 05:05 PM

Rain gradually clearing on Saturday... just in time for me to get there :)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 05:43 PM

Everything except food packed.

So we are planning to pitch caravan and then park in the Bulverton car park. I understand it is a 5 minute up hill walk from the campsite. Most of the time we will be using bus.

So how far from campsite is road where bus stop is? Is it also long uphill slog too?

Also we know there is a one way system for getting to Bulverton. When is that enforced? From Friday? Saturday? Are there any other one way roads in Sidmouth which may hamper us towing caravan to the campsite?

Previous answers muchly appreciated as will be following.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Noreen
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 06:01 PM

Don't go INTO Sidmouth with caravan, there is no need. Find your route to campsite staying out of the centre, where streets are narrow, busy and full of people.
Set up caravan, park car then walk everywhere, with bus as necessary.
Central Sidmouth is flat :)
See you soon!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 06:16 PM

Has anyone mentioned the great problem with getting there?

AVOID THE A303 NEAR STONEHENGE.

I spent 3 hours doing about 100 yards there on the way down last year.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Surreysinger
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 07:16 PM

To add to Ralphie's observations on the Volunteer ....

George Frampton certainly IS in charge of the lunchtime events at the Volunteer again this year, and will (as previously) have a rota of co-hosts during the week.

>>It's normally very crowded and tends to focus more on the traditional end of things.There is usually a pit orchestra of two or three musos, to play the occasional tune. But, as there are so many fine >>singers, most people only get a chance of one song.

There is always a pit orchestra :-)
One thing to be very aware of is that this is NOT a singaround. Singers get asked to do their one song (and that isn't guaranteed by any means)by invitation of the co-hosts only. As Ralphie said, the pool of fine singers that turn up is a large one, and even some of the best may not get a song during the course of proceedings ! If you want a singaround, then you will probably be happier with the ones run by Herga Kitty every day in the Yacht Club (I'm assuming that it's there again this year Kitty), or the sessions that the Middle Bar Singers hold in the Anchor every day.

>>Still it's well worth the trek up the hill at least once during the week, but be advised to get there erly (pre-midday) for any chance of a seat.

A wee bit alarmist methinks. Most people tend to turn up after mid-day...

>>Evenings are more relaxed, with a session in the bar, and mainly local bands playing in the garden.

The evening sessions (which I assume will be proceeding as in the last three years under the benign leadership of Roger Grimes, Bernie Cherry and Ken Langsbury) are mixed - singers and musicians ... and start on Sunday night. Quite often the bands in the garden in the past (can't speak for the pub's policy this year, although George aka Gaddaffi on here may well know what Steve and Jo are likely to be up to) tend to compete in volume with what goes on in the pub itself, but it can be fun to pop outside to see things like we've had in the past - the Sidmouth Silver Band for instance at one point!)
Hope that helps, and enjoy your visit.

Looking forward to being in the Volunteer, or as Frank Ingnobody has dubbed it in Borfolk "The Tune Lover" later in the week ! :-)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 28 Jul 10 - 07:29 PM

I deal with several queries every year about towing caravans to the site - I'll be doing better maps shortly. However, for now, there are 5 roads into Sidmouth from the A3052 coast road.

Starting with the one nearest the east (from Seaton and Lyme Regis direction):

Fortescue Road - this is half way down the steep hill (Trow Hill) into Sidford. Avoid it.

Next is the major traffic light junction at Sidford Cross (junction of A375 and A3052). This is OK for buses and HGV into town but turn right at the mini island into All Saints Road before you get to Sidmouth High St. See Festival maps. Turn right again at Woodlands Hotel (another mini-island at top end of All Saints Road) and this takes you to the campsite easily - it will be on your right.

Next is the turning by Waitrose - Stowford Rise - no real point in taking this one.

Next is the Woolbrook Road - ditto as above.

Some distance further west (towards Exeter) is the A3176 at the BOWD - a big pub/restaurant on the right.

BEFORE you get to this pub travelling west (or just after it travelling east), turn onto A3176 to Sidmouth. Narrow country road but takes you to festival campsite which will be on your left. This junction is the FIRST one to Sidmouth if travelling east from Exeter direction along the A3052. It is also the one signed with FolkWeek signs.

Don't get stressed if you get into Sidmouth with a caravan - it is easy. HGVs do it all the time. Just stick to the main roads!!!

WHATEVER you do do NOT try to get to the official festival CAR PARK towing a caravan. Parts of your caravan might make it, other parts might not...... And don't overshoot the festival campsite entrance, it is some distance before you can turn around. And avoid Ice House Lane. It is a shortcut for people and small cars only.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 29 Jul 10 - 02:35 AM

Irene - I will not be running any sessions in the Yacht club/ Sailing club, and never have done! Tim Edwards and I will take it in turns to run singarounds in the Faulkner bar of the Royal York and Faulkner hotel from Sunday morning through to Friday - as I mentioned earlier in this thread, anyone who fancies a sing will be welcome, if they can cope with the relatively early (10.30) start!

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 29 Jul 10 - 03:45 AM

I MAY just look into The Faulkner on my way to the Newt on the odd morning IF I get up early enough !


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Mary Humphreys
Date: 29 Jul 10 - 04:00 AM

English Rebellion ( Nick & Mary Barber, Anahata and me ) will be the pit orchestra at the Volly on Tuesday. Hope to see some of you there!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Ralphie
Date: 29 Jul 10 - 04:17 AM

If anyone is scared of the Radway Don't be!
Basically, continuous tunes Midday til Midnight (Strict curfew to appease the locals!)
Obviously, the main bits are Lunch 12-3, and evening 8-12.
Gets a bit quieter in the afternoon, which sometimes are the most interesting sessions. People get a chance to interact...
It's all pretty informal. New players are welcome, despite the rumours!
Music is generally English/Northern European/Spanish/Scandiwegian!
But it's not a singing session. As has been stated above, there are other venues for song. Which is the beauty of Sidmouth. Something for everyone.
So, any musicians, young or old, experienced or novice. Pop in if you're passing. I'm the tall ugly big nosed bloke with the concertina.
See you Sunday
Ralphie


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Cllr
Date: 29 Jul 10 - 05:26 AM

Radway is Fab, I only do unacommpained singing but i do pop into the Radway to listen usually on the way to or from the Anchor, also the cider and beer is good in the Radway (westons and doombar)

Cllr


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Ralphie
Date: 29 Jul 10 - 06:57 AM

Thanks Cllr. Glad you enjoy it. It's a great place to stop at for a pint and a sandwich on your way into town! Maybe see you sometime next week


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Surreysinger
Date: 29 Jul 10 - 07:18 AM

Whoops - sorry Kitty, I thought it didn't sound right when I typed it. Glad you cleared that one up :-)

Mary - tisk tisk ... tis my understanding that the details of the pit band for the Volly each day are supposed to be kept under wraps. (I certainly seem to remember Ralphie having his knuckles wrapped by a regular on here for announcing the day that Housewives' Choice were due in there a couple of years ago.) LOL


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: nickp
Date: 30 Jul 10 - 06:46 AM

The RIGHT HAND bar of the Bedford is usually American Oldtime.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST, Fido
Date: 30 Jul 10 - 07:45 PM

well, we can guess what happened to JB but what happened to the Newt?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,GUEST: Va Tam - cookie crumbled
Date: 01 Aug 10 - 01:50 PM

To all who are still Sidmouth virgins - next year BE HERE!

Mawkin:Causley wonderful, Liza Carthy and Saul Rose ditto, Jim Murray with stolen half of M:C, Pete Coe, need I say more.

Don't have any more time gotta go to fringe.
See ya!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 01 Aug 10 - 04:49 PM

Yeah, well, it was sort of all right. Best couple of hours was with the recovering JB in the Bedford from about 5 to about 7.30pm on Sat, until the piss-heads fucked it up. I must however admit that there was one fiddler in particular in the Bedford in Friday night who was good enough for it quite to inspire my goat-beating. The Mocha must have known I was there: they took tagine off the menu for folk-week. The otter bitter is better than the otter ale and the drayman (beer) in the Newt was pretty good too. The beer in the Faulkner was not nice, but there was a decent scotch (I forget the name) in the Volly. Did I notice a tendency for the electric bands in pubs to be well, less sort of "folky" (although the one I heard in the hotel with the hogroast as I passed by seemed OK)?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: the lemonade lady
Date: 01 Aug 10 - 05:33 PM

Any lemonade there this year?
Sal


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 01 Aug 10 - 06:54 PM

Dunno Sal. Where would it have been?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 01 Aug 10 - 06:59 PM

PS. I did hear a groundswell from locals met via my hosts who have lived there about 45 years and participate in some events that are part of the festival, so they are not outsiders to the festy) that the festy has priced itself out of the local market (and maybe other markets too).

They say

There used to be residents' season tickets.
Now you need a full season ticket AND at extra cost a Ham Season ticket - and still are not guaranteed admission.
And if you are non resident camping is costly and local B&B's are charging up to £90 a night.
Beer in most hotels is a stupid price (I will add that the Newt seems to be an honourable exception).


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tug the Cox
Date: 02 Aug 10 - 09:28 AM

The Beer prices this year are a disgrace..except the sailing club. I live 10 miles away in Exmouth, and can always get beer £1.00 a pint cheaper..the same beer, delivered on the same dray to pubs owned by the same companies. Why...Exmouth has a Witherspoons....makes everyone else sell beer at resonable prices. Sidmouth needs a Witherspoons quick...this cartel pricing is a crime.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 02 Aug 10 - 10:22 AM

"There used to be residents' season tickets."

There are still residents' reduced price tickets, but they have to be purchased before a specific date. If we have priced ourselves out of the local market, I'm mystified as to why a postcode analysis shows so many ticket purchases from EX10.

We have also worked for months on the systems to ensure that Ham Evening ticketholders anyone who buys event tickets for those very popular events are ensured entry. Of course, if we had really priced ourselves out of many markets, over-subscribed concerts would not even be an issue - but we have, in fact, increased ticket sales by a very substantial margin this year, so our management systems for sales and venue access are constantly being monitored. This afternoon's concert in the Ham is sold out, and there is a queue currently to get in - just like three of the last four gigs in the venue.

And the sun is still shining. :)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 02 Aug 10 - 11:26 AM

Don't shoot the messenger, Ruth. It makes no odds to me. I go to stay with friends (which costs fuel to get there and back and a token of my appreciation - this year three brugmansia and a couple of bottles of wine), I go to fringe thingies, I buy beer.

Tug, the stuff in the Newt was I think £2.80 per pint which seemed reasonable, and the "drayman" was nice.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tug the Cox
Date: 02 Aug 10 - 01:21 PM

Will have a pint tomorrow....best so far is sailing club , London pride at £2.50.

Just off to my local in Exmouth, ( FnL) happy hour till 7.00. Directors, and Otter at £2.00, Stargazer and Yellowhammer at £1.80.
Maybe pop in at Wetherspoons later, good variety at £1.95, though Ruddles is normally only £1.65, or the Good old Bicton where Branoc is always £2.25 and Doom Bar £2.45.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 02 Aug 10 - 04:39 PM

Dangerous!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 03 Aug 10 - 04:30 AM

"Don't shoot the messenger, Ruth. It makes no odds to me."

And please don't take umbrage to my countering rumour and speculation with reality. I'm sure your anecdotal reports were not ill-meant, but such things can be damaging if reported as fact.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 04 Aug 10 - 03:53 AM

Hard as it is to pick festival highlights, last night's Cordelia's Dad reunion and the singing session afterwards with Tim Eriksen, Jeff Warner, Jim Moray, Jackie Oates, Sandra Kerr, Barry Lister, Yorkie Bartram, Briony Griffith, Gavin Davenport, Reese Wesson, Jim Causley, Derek Schofield, Lucy Farrell, and loads of other people I can't remember right now, was just magic.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 04 Aug 10 - 07:14 AM

The impression that I accurately reported is not affected by any rebuttals or even refutations here. What would be needed would be to convey the details that Ruth sets out to the people who spoke to me - the locals who she says are wrong, but whose non-opposition (or better support) the festival needs. That is a matter for festival publicity.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 04 Aug 10 - 10:52 AM

It is equally a matter for festival publicity to counter inaccurate or misleading rumour, speculation and gossip when it appears in public fora such as a folk messageboard - hence my response. Local communications and relationships are a separate matter and will be dealt with in due course through the appropriate channels.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 04 Aug 10 - 05:07 PM

It was local channels that I reported. Go to.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 04 Aug 10 - 05:31 PM

By the way, did anyone find my hat? It's a straw hat with a bit of a hole in front and a hatband that says "Fosters". I think I left in in the Bedford, but it might have been the York and Faulkner. It was on Saturday night. If so please give it to John Barden, or Jan Barden, or Fisheye, or Kev the Clogs, or Dilligaf, or a Leopard (or Leopard cub) to return to me. Ta.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: the lemonade lady
Date: 05 Aug 10 - 04:07 AM

is really impressed with the Sidmouth Folk Week newsletter (Wednesday 4th August edition) Suggests you go here but it doesn't work for me.

Sal


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 05 Aug 10 - 04:53 AM

From: the lemonade lady - PM
Date: 01 Aug 10 - 05:33 PM

Any lemonade there this year?
Sal

Nowt at all Sal - And let me say I miss your stall - Nice for a refereshing NON Alcohoic drink and a god natter


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 08 Aug 10 - 11:48 AM

Defo going to offer ourselves as stewards next year. Enjoyed doing the stewarding almost as much as the festival and the fringe. Nice break and different head space than going from event to event.

Howard and Graham at the Manor Pavilion were super nice.

Best bit not stewarding was the last concert we attended. Chumabwamba at the Manor on Thursday night. They were called out for an encore and who do ya think got pulled up on stage to help them with a Johnny Cash impersonation? Clive Lever. It was fabulous.

Only 3 suggestions from me and they will go on the feedback form.

1. A proper disabled accessible shower.
2. The toilet was great, though individual keys would have been more helpful. Getting up 3 times a night to go seek the key 2 caravans away got to be a bit wearing. If it had been raining, I would have been in trouble as even dew covered grass was very slippery to walk.
3. Seating outside Ham for elderly and disabled queueing for big concerts.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Essex Girl
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 07:02 AM

Tam, as I explained to you, at the Ham we usually make seats available to people who find it hard standing for a long time, you just have to ask the stewards so we can ferret them out!!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tug the Cox
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 07:54 AM

Go to the Sailing Club for Showers...good facility.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 08:37 AM

some (namely me) people are too shy to ask, Essex Girl.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Essex Girl
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 09:04 AM

Tam, I'm sure that after your debut on the Hub you won't be shy next year!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 09:17 AM

Hunnybunch... singing and asking for special concessions is 2 different things.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 12:35 PM

Tam - I'm so glad you made it to one of the morning singarounds in the Faulkner bar, and sang!

I caught up with Sal's lemonade at Dartmoor.

Would be grateful for an update on Jeff Keller, though I haven't checked other threads yet.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 01:09 PM

In case anyone's mystified by my query about Jeff K - Cllr and Becca paid a flying visit to Dartmoor festival on Saturday afternoon, in between trips to Exeter hospital A&E, where Jeff had been admitted with excessively high blood pressure and arhythmic heartbeat....

Kitty


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Noreen
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 01:50 PM

From Rebecca:

Jeff's pretty much back to his old self... he just needs to take it fairly easy until he can consult with his own doctor, and there are no apparent problems otherwise. All in all, it was about as inconvenient as something like that ever would be. :-)

That's what Sidmouth does for you ...


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 02:39 PM

Now that there is no need for concern may I be curmudgeonly and ask where in the UK one would "consult with one's own doctor" rather than "consult one's own doctor"?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Noreen
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 03:09 PM

You may ask, Richard, but the answer is that Jeff will be consulting with his own doctor when he gets home to Boston (Massachusetts, not Lincolnshire).


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 03:15 PM

In that case, it is very probable that he will do just that!

May I also suggest that political support for a fully funded free-at-the-point-of-use National Health service in both countries is in oder?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Noreen
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 03:39 PM

Oh, yes.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 03:41 PM

By the way (thread drift setting in) did you have any trouble with the mains supply to the caravan? VT apparently has no feed to the consumer unit.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Noreen
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 04:02 PM

We never tried the mains supply, so can't say, sorry.

Back to Sidmouth! (I wish)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 09 Aug 10 - 08:03 PM

Just wondering how "Greenguy" got on after all the advice supplied, or did we ever meet him?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Folkiedave
Date: 10 Aug 10 - 04:59 AM

I was there for the week, and thoroughly enjoyed it all. We have to accept it is a different festival to the one Steve Heap ran. One of the markers of this is very visible in the programme.

Most of the events are now sponsored by local businesses. That does not happen by accident. I used a particular ice-cream parlour (amongst a wide choice) because they sponsored a particular concert. I have more examples but that was one.

Now I remember the controversy of the latter years of Steve Heap when the traders claimed the Festival brought little to the town - and didn't want much to do with it. We have seen a sea change since then.

There will always be complaints - there was the usual letter in the Sidmouth Herald about folkies urinating in the gardens.

One other point - the evening concerts in the Ham seemed to be mostly sell-outs. Although value for money they did not come cheap. Ask a tourist board person how they would like a week of high income visitors like Sidmouth gets. And someone else organises it for them!!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Mr Red
Date: 10 Aug 10 - 05:45 AM

I was being berated by a Morris man who said "We've seen you dance now sit there and watch us dance"! And you know I didn't see that particular berator doing any dancing! Did I Dave?

All my irritations are really organisational. The kind of thing that can be thought through before the fact. Artistically my preferrences are not the next Folkie's so if I don't like I don't go, and if I go and find I don't like I am comforted by the fact that someone liked them, because they booked them. If I can't accept others' preferrence how the hell can they put up with me? But turning up to a workshop that has been moved to an earlier time is not good planning. Cancell it because there are two, and we are disappointed, move it forward and we are irritated. And that is the very kind of thing that a newbie at Sidders will not have found out how to cope with. Read the newsletter every day? Not even us more hardened Siddernauts do! We bought a programme, and that couldn't possibly be wrong. Turn up for an event and it is postponed, we know when to return. Pre-pone it and we have NO CHANCE. Simples innit?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 10 Aug 10 - 08:30 AM

Mr Red, I have absolutely no idea which workshop you are referring to. I am not aware of a workshop being re-scheduled for an earlier time. But if this happened at one of our almost 700 events, I can only humbly apologise.

By the way, there were only two newsletters.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 10 Aug 10 - 01:01 PM

Unfortunately the first news letter ran out before we could get one and as stewards we needed it. We had to borrow the Ham box office copy and mark changes in our main programme. The lanyards for holding passes also gone and we arrived on Thursday 29 July well before festival started.

If possible, it might be good to have a different coloured lanyard (or armband) for stewards (even if we have to buy them) so there is a visible presence to punters who have questions/concerns. Someone mentioned to me that there should be more stewards in the high viz vests just wandering about town. But in the event you don't have enough stewards, then I for one have no problem stepping up to fill the one off needs when I am off duty. The special lanyard or armband would facilitate that.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 10 Aug 10 - 01:02 PM

bum... I meant to put that last post in the comments thread. Guess I will copy and paste it there.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Old Vermin
Date: 10 Aug 10 - 01:26 PM

Having popped in and out for a day, only doing the real essentials, I am now struck by how much easier it was without camping or having a complex schedule.

I seem to remember that last year all went more-or-less OK for us for about two days from the Monday. It then started to fall apart with poor weather, interrupted sleep - just too many people being stupidly noisy at ridiculous times on the 'quiet' far end of the camp-site - and the Blackmore/High Street area being sealed off after the assault & rape. We ended up with most of our second book of workshop tickets unused.

Perhaps the trick is to do as little as possible. That said, I'm beginning to consider Folk Camps. We enjoy actually singing, dancing and playing a bit, but are getting a bit reluctant to pay money to sit still in crowded venues and listen to other people doing stuff.

Keep it simple? Are the best bits of Sidmouth free-ish?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: JHW
Date: 10 Aug 10 - 01:30 PM

I was asked in the street for a 'greasy spoon' cafe ie somewhere a bit cheaper. There was one in the market but that is now the 'original' factory shop. The Rugby Club used to do cheaper scran but moved over to catering for teams.

I've had decent enough meals but had to bite the bullet on price. Anyone find a bargain?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Folkiedave
Date: 10 Aug 10 - 03:27 PM

I was being berated by a Morris man who said "We've seen you dance now sit there and watch us dance"! And you know I didn't see that particular berator doing any dancing! Did I Dave?

1. I had watched you dance. 2. I haven't danced for fifteen years, a combination of age and asthma. 3. I am now simply a mouthpiece designed to drum up a crowd.

My missus went to a different dance workshop each day. No problems. To be fair as a (non-dancing) member of a morris team booked for the festival I was delighted with the organisation of the (Morris et al) dance side of things.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Tug the Cox
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 09:21 AM

The fish and chip shop between the Anchor and the Ship does good,, reasonably priced breakfasts etc.
There is so much good participative stuff on the fringe that it is easy to have a great week without going to any paid events...just be generous with the collecting tins.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Derek Schofield
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 12:26 PM

I'm glad Tug the Cox added the bit about being generous with the collecting tins. At the end of the day, the fringe stuff is there (and everyone enjoys it being there), only because the main festival exists. and that has to be paid for. Artists, marquees, people to run the festival 52 weeks of the year, publicity, etc etc........ The money collected in those tins are an important source of festival income. So thanks to everyone who contributed, musically and financially!
Derek


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Derek Schofield
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 12:34 PM

Inspired in part by Cllr's original posting, and by meeting his American guests in the Bedford, late one night, I would like to work on a series of FAQs for the festival website. In other words, a newbie's guide.
So, what do you think should be included?
Particularly interested to hear from people who were new the the festival this year (and who bought a ticket).
Warning - I don't want loads of stuff about the fringe! Yes, one item might be "Are there any informal sessions? Answer - yes ..." plus some details.
So I am more interested in the main festival.
You can post your suggestions here (thoguh if it's slow, I may start a new thread), or email press @ sidmouthfolkweek.co.uk
thanks
Derek


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 12 Aug 10 - 04:55 AM

A FAQ page or two would be a good idea - I've done some of them already on my camping page on the SeeRed website because so many people want to know about alternative campsites - where there is less mud, better showering facilities and less noise in the small hours. It is surely small minded not to include 'alternative' information that is of use to some festival attendees.

Try this http://www.seered.co.uk/camping.htm

Similarly people ask about the alpha bus that serves the Golf Club site - they get it confused with the festival bus service.

I've responded to queries about public transport with a page of my own including a bus map - it's proven useful to a few people.

link here http://www.seered.co.uk/busmap.htm

The official website has links to many other websites that are Devon folk linked - how about a link to mine?? If only the festival management could be so broadminded as to include all relevant links and views!

I've heard nothing but praise for the Ham and Bedford music by the way. I'll be publishing draft pages of discussion and a few photos later in the week, comments welcome as always - and I'll maybe work on a FAQ page of my own.

I hope you made a good profit this year - conditions were ideal.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 12 Aug 10 - 05:03 AM

I'll be sending suggestions for improvements to the festival website re: ticket ordering. So many people need particular aspects of the structure clarified that I would be a rich(er) man if I had a pound for every time I answered some questions!!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,folkiedave
Date: 12 Aug 10 - 06:19 AM

We camped at Salcombe Regis Camping and Caravanning and it very good. Excellent showers and constant hot water + electricity for the motorhome was a boon. (Not up to Caravan Club standards but still very good). It was recommended by a Sidmouth resident.

We used the Alpha Bus service which was basically hourly (with a meal/rest gap at lunchtime and evening). Last bus at 1.00 am which to be honest was a bit too early for a night owl like me). Drops off near the Radway/Swan and thus very handy.

Some of the Alpha services in the evening (late evening they are every 30 minutes or so) could be very crowded. But everyone got on and there was often some singing (generally "The Wheels of the Bus.......). The two drivers (husband and wife) were very friendly and the cost was £1.50 in each direction which was reasonable. No season ticket.

Apparently the Cricket Club is now £35.00 a night and I was assured could not be booked. Spaces are on a first-come, first-served basis. There may be a discount for a week. Whilst this is expensive (Five Star Caravan Club site is £20.20) it is very convenient and I would consider it for future years. I took a peek at the showers and they are communal but looked of high quality.

Don't know about the Rugby Club but the showers are rumoured not to be first class!!

A couple of years ago I discovered the Sailing Club showers paying (I think 50p a go. Don't know if that still goes.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Derek Schofield
Date: 12 Aug 10 - 07:32 AM

thanks to Steve and Dave for these comments. Look forward to receiving comments on the ticketing system - this and box office arrangements are on the agenda for Autumn discussion.

any more comments from others?

Derek


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 05:03 AM

Feedback is always useful for campsites - one social dance caller + his wife had an appalling experience on a local farm site and left after a couple of days to get accommodation out of town.

This type of info can be very useful to other people, especially newbies, and I'll be updating my camping page as appropriate.

If anyone can tell me the route taken by the Alpha bus and if it is a constant pattern year on year that would be helpful - I've never actually even seen one of them (rare species?).

The rugby club certainly book year on year for campervans - I know someone who does this. I'm surprised by the suggestion the CC does not. What happens to all those turned away and if the main festival site is full?

Better and firmer info would be useful to all, especially newcomers. I did try and interest the local press about doing an article asking people if they would be prepared to let motorcampers and/or tent campers use their lawns or driveways (some people do this year on year) but there was no interest.

A couple of people I know camp (tents) in gardens and use showers etc in the house, it works well and they have a secure and quiet base each year. If a register could be set up more households might participate - it might take custom away from the main campsite but competition generally serves to improve standards and encourage people to attend the festival, even if they don't use the official campsite.

Accommodation is an increasing problem - the organisers were frantically trying to find spaces for some artistes this year - one problem is that insurance companies are apparently taking a stronger line on letting private houses out for a week and refusing to provide cover. So fewer residents now do this.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 07:04 AM

"the organisers were frantically trying to find spaces for some artistes this year"

See, this is the reason why I have been disinclined to join in with these discussions and, in fact, to post links to your website on ours, Steve. The statement above is simply not true - a case of hearsay augmented by assumption, which is the case with many of the assertions on your website: a sliver of information plus a whole lot of conjecture often add up to conjecture being presented as fact. Our accommodation manager is amazing, and he lives in Sidmouth. He did a fantastic job of finding us accommodation for all the artists, and there was nothing "frantic" about it at all. We decided on a different approach to artist accom this year, and sent many of our artists who were only staying for one night to hotels in Exeter. This was partly to do with accommodation shortages in Sidmouth itself, but also because our hospitality team, who change beds and make up rooms in self-catering accommodation during the week, is small and worked very hard last year. In coming up with solutions, we ended up with over 100 bed nights in Exeter, which relieved greatly the pressure on the rooms available in Sidmouth. Again, there was nothing frantic, and this strategy was in place many months in advance.

With regard to the campsite: it costs us a lot to put in the infrastructure for our campsite. It is within the festival's financial interest to promote the campsite while it still has vacant space. It is quite ridiculous to think that we would promote or advertise the services of other campsites when our first concern is filling our own. The festival is a business and it needs to run as such. If you want to promote other campsites on your website that's entirely your choice, but the expectation that we would do the same is a bit naive.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Bloke from Poole
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 08:05 AM

Due to a problem with holiday/breakdown cover arrangements I couldn't steward this year, but I had made some enquiries: (as of early this year)

1) Cricket club don't take bookings, just turn up. The guy said they hadn't turned a camper van away yet. But then at £35 a night I don't suppose I would.
2) Rugby club are cheaper (£20? not sure) and take bookings during a fixed period, in the autumn as I recall. But they go very quickly.

I was looking forward to seeing the campsite improvements, after getting towed out last year. Some of the points I suggested were implemented, I believe (although not necessarily as a direct result!)

While I understand Ruth's comments, the festival campsite will never be to everyone's taste. I don't think some links to other local sites would be out of order.
The purpose of a business is, after all, to make money for its shareholders...

Malcolm
who made it for Friday morning and afternoon, and got unaccountably wet at an event that didn't happen.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Rumncoke
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 08:42 AM

The showers in the Rugby club are always hot - I have been using the ladies side of them for decades.

Sure the floor can be muddy and there is a lingering odour of testosterone laden sweat until the ladies have been using them for a few days, but there is a broom cupboard if you really have to mop, I just use plastic shoes to cross the floor.

If you just need to refresh yourself and get changed then the Rugby club showers are fine - they were 50 pence a go.

You can sing 'The Oggy Man' to the buzz of the extractor.

The cricket club was reluctant to allow non campers to use the showers, the water was not all that hot and sometimes very cool, and they charged a pound a time.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 09:01 AM

Malcolm: the TIC, who also act as our box office during the year, can happily direct festival-goers to the other accommodation available in Sidmouth, including campsites. Our website exists to promote the services and goods that we provide. It seems an amicable situation, and I don't think it is likely to change in the near future.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,LDT
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 09:33 AM

Finding this thread rather interesting as am planning on going next year (and maybe volunteer for stewarding). I've even insisted that my 'transport' book first week of august off as she has to book holidays a year in advance.


Being allergic to camping ;) (hate having to share public loo's/showers *shudder* and the grass makes me sneeze and a NEED electricity to charge up my stupid phone with short battery life) I think I'll have to find myself a B&B.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 10:39 AM

Quote: "the organisers were frantically trying to find spaces for some artistes this year"

"See, this is the reason why I have been disinclined to join in with these discussions and, in fact, to post links to your website on ours, Steve. The statement above is simply not true - a case of hearsay augmented by assumption, which is the case with many of the assertions on your website: a sliver of information plus a whole lot of conjecture often add up to conjecture being presented as fact".

Not so 'Ruth' . I had a discussion on this very topic with people who host in Sidmouth. Let's just say my knowledge of some of the facts seems to be different from yours - although you might have more complete information. And I live here all year too. Many people contribute views and information to my website to make it as rounded as possible.

As for promoting other campsites - you seem to have a rather narrow business model. Which is better - people coming and buying festival tickets and choosing not to use your campsite (because of what they have been told about it or have gleaned from arguably reliable and popular third party websites) or simply not coming at all?

Sidmouth people gain from B&B - do you resent this? Other campsites gain, and so does the festival, when people come who would not dream of using the official campsite because of age, infirmity, home comforts, etc.

Your attitude reminds me of the local people who resented the money Steve Heap sometimes made from the International Festival despite that every year they did well out of it themselves.

And whatever else you do - please don't tell me I am naive when it comes to finance and economics!!

This discussion is all about being helpful to newcomers - put yourself in the position of someone coming for the first time - would it be helpful to have lots of info in one place (or even with links to my website) rather than have to scratch around all over Google and tripadvisor (etc) to collate all the most relevant data?

Who is being naive?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 10:54 AM

In reply to Guest LDT - I had a tour of the Sidholme Hotel the other day when I took a festival attendee to the airport (to save her a £28 taxi fare!). They seem to offer good value and have rooms free for next year. £62 for B&B and evening meal included and apparently no single room supplements. Meals are quite good too so I'm told. Other hotels were advertising B&B alone from £60 - likely with a supplement for a single person.

The main part of the hotel is rather grand - piano in the music room, vaulted ceilings, very 'Jane Austin' and only a short walk into town. They made themselves very unpopular with the Folk community a few years ago by cancelling a block booking (details on my unreliable website but all obtained from people who were directly involved!) but they happily accept individual folkies. Some people have been going there for over 10 years. I mention it only because I had a conducted tour a few days ago. The annex rooms are a bit naff - better go for the main building if you can afford it.

Maybe I should visit every available campsite and hotel and extend my unreliable photographic website record so as to be even more unhelpful to potential festival attendees?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,LDT
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 11:13 AM

"I had a tour of the Sidholme Hotel the other day when I took a festival attendee to the airport (to save her a £28 taxi fare!). They seem to offer good value and have rooms free for next year. £62 for B&B and evening meal included and apparently no single room supplements. Meals are quite good too so I'm told. Other hotels were advertising B&B alone from £60 - likely with a supplement for a single person."

£60? That's £420 for a whole week...hmmm...might have to just do a couple of days then.
What would be the best combination of lets say 3-4 days to do? Is mid-week or weekend best to catch all the stuff going on?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,LDT
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 11:25 AM

another question if you volunteer to steward do you have to be staying there the whole week to qualify?

and tickets the young adult ticket...do you have to be 24 still when it gets to august? (like if I bought the tickets when I was 24 but by time august came round I was 25 would I still get young adult ticket or need an adult one?)


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,cardboard cutout
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 12:00 PM

For Guest LDT

"I think I'll have to find myself a B&B."

I'm fairly sure there are B&Bs that will be cheaper than the actual hotels: they will get booked up a long time in advance, though.


"What would be the best combination of lets say 3-4 days to do? Is mid-week or weekend best to catch all the stuff going on?"

Mid-week has by far the more interesting stuff, in my opinion, although slightly less dance displays etc. on the sea-front.

Can't answer your stewarding query - don't know.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 13 Aug 10 - 01:07 PM

It is my understanding from other stewards that the campsite is much improved even from last year with a large hard standing at top and arrangements for tractors and 4 wheel drives to haul up any vehicles and caravans if need arose. So it looks to me from this one thing that a lesson was learned last year and solutions put in place. Brilliant having farm shop and hot food van at top of field too. Hope they add hot veg soup and crusty rolls for vegetarians. Another big plus the convenience of shuttle though sometimes crowded evenings returning to camp. They solved that immediately by putting on extra shuttle in the evenings. There was even a festival osteopath with massage table pitched near us.

We will continue to use festival campsite as long as we have a van, unless my physical state requires something more amenable. If/when that happens we will save for and book B&B early.   Next year we bring big awning so we have more living space. Was lovely sitting outside with muesli, strawberries and coffee in the mornings, surveying the camp and the hills beyond.

LDT I highly recommend stewarding. It provides nice break from festivalling and opportunity to make friends. Also there are companies that will deliver and collect caravans to and from festivals for you. You hire, they deliver, you use like self catering. You can have hot shower and limited electricity inside the van. Just a thought.

Oh just another thought. Could the festival (for a fee) help arrange those hired caravans? Too much work? Just thinking maybe another income generator, some how.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 14 Aug 10 - 08:37 AM

A quick look at the internet confirms that caravan hire in peak season is from £40 per day or £250 per week even if you collect and tow it yourself. Hiring a decent sized campervan in peak season is more like £500 upwards per week.

In theory you can have hot showers in either but you'll need to transport all the water from distant taps to refill the tanks. Only large motorhomes have sizeable on-board water storage. Festivals generally don't allow repeat trips to fill up, it can churn up the roadways too much if everyone did it. And you have to dispose of the used water.

I bought an old caravan five years ago, did some work on it and it's still fine for festivals - main benefit being a balanced flue space heater! If you know what you are doing with gas systems, brakes, electrics etc you can do caravanning on the cheap. Otherwise it's £60 per hour even for simple repairs. But you do need somewhere to store the wretched thing the rest of the year. Buying a cheap motorhome is asking for trouble unless you are very good with DIY. You need to tax, MoT and insure it too. For most people - B&B makes a lot of sense in Sidmouth.

In summary, it seems there is scope to encourage more locals to do B&B during FolkWeek.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 14 Aug 10 - 08:45 AM

And if anyone wishes to know the things that can go wrong with old caravans and motorhomes my website offers a reliable guide. There is plenty of other advice available on the internet but few of these repairs should be attempted by novices.

Try this: http://www.seered.co.uk/top_of_caravans.htm


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 14 Aug 10 - 10:23 AM

taps both drinking water and other were on the far side of toilets and well away from driving track up the field, so no danger of swamping the road. water butts come with wheels now making transport easier.

Sorry maybe I keep pressing for the festival campsite because it was fine weather and lovely experience for me. Hearing people singing, whistles, guitars, pipes and banjos, concertinas and even a trumpet while basking in the sun on a break was wonderful.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,folkiedave
Date: 14 Aug 10 - 01:47 PM

I didn't use the festival campsite. I wanted a hook-up for my motorhome and I wanted good showers. I also wanted to avoid being towed out in case of bad weather from the official camp site. I have an expensive motorhome and I did not want to take a chance on it being damaged.

To answer Steve's question about the Alpha bus - on the way out - to the Radway turn right to Sidford, up the big hill(Trow Hill?) - takes a right for Salcombe halfway up the hill along some narrow roads, stops at Salcombe Regis Camping and then goes onwards. (We got off there). I understand there were two more camp sites afterwards. But I have no idea.

Inwards much the same except it comes down Fortescue and Sid road and then stops on Salcombe Rd by the bridge. A bit further than the festival campsite at a guess. Took us forty minutes approx. to walk on a more direct route for cars (Salcombe Regis Rd). but not suitable for the bus to go.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 15 Aug 10 - 04:06 AM

I agree that in a year of good weather any 'official' folk festival campsite would be hard to beat. The pity at Sidmouth is that the site is inherently unsuitable for camping - it has quite a slope over much of its area and the ground rapidly becomes waterlogged. In contrast, Towersey is broadly flat and, being on more chalky ground, it dries more quickly if there is rain. The view from Sidmouth festival campsite on a good day is second to none. There is a report in the local Sidmouth paper about the 'fringe' festival at Thorn Park campsite - I'll copy it to my webpages shortly.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 22 Aug 10 - 06:43 PM

Some comments are now loaded on Sidmouth's SeeRed website - they've been through several drafts and discussions locally and are now available on the web. start at page 139 and onwards to page 153.

Constructive ideas and further comments welcomed.

link here for 2010 pages: http://www.seered.co.uk/folk139.htm


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: JHW
Date: 23 Aug 10 - 09:42 AM

The Alpha bus does Thorn, Salcombe Regis, Oakdown and Kings Down Tail.
I've stayed at Salcombe Regis, a but plusher than King's Down Tail but much more crowded and all the site at King's Down Tail is flat.
At Salcombe Regis my pitch was sloping (though not as bad as at the official site where every time I awoke I was like a foetus at the bottom end of the tent).
I've used KDT lots of years. Making a late decision to come I came down Monday. Lots of folks go home Sunday night so while you might struggle to get a last minute pitch on Friday you'll probably be OK Sunday night.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Girl Friday
Date: 23 Aug 10 - 10:23 AM

I have been looking at Sidmouth's hotels and B and Bs. They are charging obscene amounts.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,LDT
Date: 23 Aug 10 - 10:28 AM

I've been looking too. They all seem to be out of my budget. Might have to give in an camp...although somewhere with electric hook up.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 24 Aug 10 - 06:16 PM

One of the reasons 'cheap and cheerful' B&Bs no longer exist is that to be 'approved' and appear on some internet listings you have to have ensuites (etc etc) and it all got a bit expensive for some owners - so they needed to put up prices to cover all the capital expenditure they were (in effect) forced to undertake in order to stay in business at all.

In the days when I stayed in lots of B&Bs I was quite happy with basic accommodation so long as it was clean. Also, so many people now expect 5 star comfort even from a simple B&B.

Here is a true story:

a friend of a friend stayed in cheap lodgings in London to save money. Got back home and started to itch. Turned out to be bed bugs. His whole house had to be treated - they apparently hide everywhere even inside wall sockets just waiting for their next meal. They can wait for more than a year at low temperatures. It makes your own tent seem quite atractive! Like TB, bed bugs are making a comeback.

I read a very interesting book years ago entitled "The Life that Lives on Man." It had wonderful pictures of the scabies mite including one of a mite in its burrow in human skin. I'm ITCHING to read it again.....

An out of date listing of B&Bs is here: http://www.seered.co.uk/hotels.htm

I may add 2011 prices if I get round to it.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 24 Aug 10 - 06:25 PM

Thank you for the info about the Alpha bus by the way.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 24 Aug 10 - 06:35 PM

It was apparently a documentary film as well: http://ftvdb.bfi.org.uk/sift/title/262942

I doubt it is available for viewing these days on the internet but let me know if it is!!.

The Listener magazine called the book "Positiflea delightful."


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: JHW
Date: 25 Aug 10 - 05:40 AM

I came away this year with the TIC list of Hotels, B&Bs etc.
Weekly prices listed make some saving on daily rates but start about £200.
Getting a vacancy is another matter. The once I have B&Bd (with a none camping friend) we struggled to find somewhere booking in January (But did) Single B&B would be harder again.
I am though trying to decide I AM going next year and trying to find a B&B NOW.
Here's why. Campsite for just me, car and tent was £13 a night. One return bus trip makes £16. If I take or fetch the guitar and freshen for evening that's £19. With breakfast downtown say £24.
Being in town is probably worth half as much again...?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,LDT
Date: 25 Aug 10 - 05:56 AM

I'm looking at B&B's now and struggling. Might try looking in Exeter or Honiton as Sidmouth is out of budget unless I only do a weekend.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Leadfingers
Date: 25 Aug 10 - 07:02 AM

I spent the week in Sidford one year , and walked in and out - Was passed by a Bus ONCE in the week !


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 25 Aug 10 - 11:12 AM

If you walk from Sidford, take the scenic route down the footpath and cyclepath - not a bus or car in sight! Buses are every 30 minutes most of the day.

Sidford is perfect if you cycle - a safe cyclepath all the way into town, and no hills. Buses from Honiton to Sidmouth are every hour, about £3.20 single I think, but not late at night. Check late night bus services if you stay outside of Sidmouth, unless you can use your car - some places are impossible on buses (Ottery St Mary for one).

I agree costs mount up: one woman I know reckoned on close to £1000 for the week as a single person - £500 for Sidholme hotel (8 days) 150 season ticket, £30 Ham tickets, £120 travel, etc.

Luckily the festival was not this week - families camping on their summer holidays have been packing up and going home they are so wet through. Applies to Cornwall too - soaked through and nearly blown away.

There may be scope for a free list on the internet of B&Bs that only do folk week - I'll happily do one at no charge to the householders - I think the TIC charge people to be put on their supplementary list, maybe that is why more people don't do it.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Bloke from Poole
Date: 26 Aug 10 - 07:24 AM

I thought it was downhill from Sidford to Sidmouth centre - and uphill coming back???


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: JHW
Date: 26 Aug 10 - 05:22 PM

GUEST LDT are you looking at B&B sites or via TIC office?


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,LDT
Date: 26 Aug 10 - 05:30 PM

using 'enjoy england' website, 'tripadvisor' and googlemaps (search nearby-accommodation). Would usually use laterooms.com but really its 'early' rooms i want not late.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Steve in Sidmouth
Date: 08 Sep 10 - 12:32 PM

I have now produced the first draft of a Newcomers' Guide to Sidmouth FolkWeek (Folk Festival).

This is available on my website together with many updated pages assessing the 2010 event.

Newcomers' Guide to Folk Week

If someone would like to check my sat-nav and postcode info - just to make sure it works!

I have also updated the camping page

campsites for Sidmouth

- some of the information on these pages was obtained from this forum - so thank you for that.

I'm not going to be rushing to update the material so take your time with comments!


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: Girl Friday
Date: 08 Sep 10 - 01:44 PM

Steve - I've been on your website and thanks for all the links. It simplified matters considerably. My comments are:
1/ Possible removal of Supporters Club membership allowing use of the official campsite. I say - not good, as I am happy to partake in fringe activities and am not fussed about concerts: this is the only way to do my bit in supporting the festival.

2/ The Bulverton Arena- This would I think, be no loss to the majority of festival attendees. It is up a steep hill, not safe for disabled people, and only used by the yoof contingent. Our yoof was content to go to bed at 11.00 or 12.00, having tired himself out. I'm not surprised that the sound from it annoys the townsfolk. I have complained on this thread before about the yoof congregating outside the toilets all night too. Yes, charge for the Bulverton. It's not needed so it'd be even better to get shot. A quieter affair such as a sing around might be acceptable on the campsite itself. That's what I expected of the chill-out tent.
3/ If the supporters ticket is withdrawn I would stay on another, flatter site.
4/ We were told that you could busk on the seafront as much as you like. No you can't because of the traders taking up all the room.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Guest. Joan Crump
Date: 08 Sep 10 - 02:16 PM

Dear Girl Friday (and others)

Steve Wozniak's "Newcomer's Guide" - and indeed his entire festival website - should be viewed as the highly subjective document that it is, and taken with a grain of salt. Steve Wozniak does not speak for FolkWeek and is not party to any internal discussions or planning. Like the other 500 stewards who volunteer their time during the festival, his time is obviously valued but this position does not give him any special insight into the festival's planning or challenges. The ticketing guide Mr Wozniak has produced, for example, may well not reflect this year's system, as we are currently reviewing the whole ticketing structure.

There are no plans whatsoever to get rid of the Bulverton or to remove it from the season ticket. It is growing in popularity year on year with a wide age range of attenders. Sound control at the venue is the best it has ever been and we did not have a single complaint from residents this year that I'm aware of.


For the most accurate and up-to-date information, please keep an eye on the official festival website.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 08 Sep 10 - 03:13 PM

I don't see the point in losing the Bulverton. What is needed are toilets nearer to it, so the kids needn't make their happy noisy way down through the camp all night.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Joan Crump
Date: 08 Sep 10 - 05:30 PM

Bulverton has its own toilets - and this year they were even under cover, in case of poor weather.

Sidmouth has a number of different audiences, of different ages and tastes, and it is challenging to cater for them all. We are constantly exploring new options and reviewing what we do in order to improve things and cater for the dynamic environment we find ourselves in.

"This would I think, be no loss to the majority of festival attendees...It's not needed so it'd be even better to get shot."

Bulverton had anywhere from 500 - 1000 people in it every night, and they appeared to be having a lovely time. While I personally observed (and chatted to) people of many ages at the Bulverton marquee, it is clearly a very important venue for the festival's younger audiences. The younger element is as important to the festival as any other audience - any festival hoping to replicate Sidmouth's longevity would aim to keep raising up the new generations. As they get older their tastes and needs will change - but hopefully at that point there will be new youngsters coming up to take their place. Hurrah for the multi-generational festival.

I would suggest that you talk to the campsite stewards next year about inappropriate late-night noise when it occurs, but I will also raise it as an issue with the appropriate managers at our next meeting. Please remember there are designated quieter areas of the campsite, and you can request them on arrival.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: GUEST,Girl Friday
Date: 08 Sep 10 - 06:55 PM

Thank you Joan for putting the official viewpoint. Also, thanks for saying that you'll raise the subject of the anti social noise and behaviour on the campsite. I did, raise with the stewards the subject of having toilets near the gate, as it seems logical to place some there. V Tam and I were two of the disabled users of the campsite, and so the quieter areas are not suitable for us. Noise from the Bulverton was expected and often enjoyable, and, whilst asleep, campsite noise was obviously not an issue. However, rowdiness was a nuisance as it was going on every time I woke up for a wee.


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Subject: RE: newbie guide to Sidmouth folk festival
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 09 Sep 10 - 02:48 AM

Sounds wafting down from the Bulverton were enticing and made me wish I was younger and fitter so I could go up and party all night.

There were occasional steward checks down field around the toilets at night. (I wake between 3 to 5 times a night thanks to a very small bladder). One very helpful young man must have thought me a bit drunk as I struggled up hill to Girl Friday's caravan to collect the key to the disabled toilet. When I wake, I am stiff and when I walk in that state I list.

So the stewards do make rounds down around the toilets during the night. Wouldn't be right or fair to station one down there, and neither would it be feasible to escort young revellers down through the camp at night.

I quite enjoyed all the fun they were having. About 3am one morning I was greeted by 2 boys who had made themselves up to look like victims of an axe murderer and had positioned themselves in contorted death poses. Giggle... I went up and pushed my toe into the ribs of one of them... telling him he'd get a chill, lying on the ground like that.


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