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Cave Rescue Auction and Party

by PCW ~, 08 September 2009

By Jopo ~ The WBCRT thanks all who helped and contributed to another successful WBCRT fundraising last Bank Holiday. Best part of 1000 was raised. Good food. Good beer. Good band and a stonking auction!

I don't know about you but I felt that the whole atmosphere was so relaxed and friendly. Al Braybrook would have won the gurning contest if we had had one - perhaps next year.

The SWCC's new plastic palace, (12 x 6 m), had it's first outing and - due to the fine late August weather - made the evening session a hit. In fact it was superb and withstood the Friday monsoon when we fought to keep it in the county! (I am sure Stevie West's feet were off the deck!).

Pete Francis did his - now expected - master auctioneer stint. How does he keep bettering his last one? To sell a canoe - and then offer the paddles separately takes some cheek! Vince and Gary E made excellent clerks keeping the master fed with lots, Claire G was a fine teller, accepting bids from her offspring, fully10% of the total!!! And thanks to those who responded to my plea for lots. We now have some good stock for the next one!

Pete Francis selling items back to the families who donated them (via their children!)
The master at work ~ pics by PCW

For the first time in 6 years we had the re-formed Squirts performing and they really laid it on. It's the first time we had seen them on the Cardy/Hall stage and they were good.

Once again the usual stage crew erected the stage in normal time. It's amazing how many bad backs and spontaneous caving trips occur when the steelwork appears!

I will be honest and say that I look at all the work that goes into getting the stage up to the club - erected - wired for light and sound and think 'Is it worth it?' I then watch everyone jigging about enjoying themselves and think, 'Yup!'

The Squirts pumped out some great numbers throught the mist! ~ pic by Pat Hall

We tried a different tack on food and most brought and cremated their own meat with the Soup Dragons providing the fancy bits. Most seemed happy with this arrangement and - depending on feedback - this may become standard at the August bash, with a couple more bbq's to ease the crush, and saves me standing for 7 hours in front of a pig.

So thanks to the SWCC for the use of the club and the marquee. Those who bid and won at the auction. Pat and the Cardy's for the stage and sound. Soup Dragons for the grub. Chris Pep and SAM as the barmaids. Alison and the Moores for flogging the left overs. I have to mention Clipjoint and the Dobsons who do everything they can - as usual!

The team has lost 2 significant funding sources this year and we do have to work at raising more from other sources, so we are especially grateful to Pat who paid for more than half the cost of the band - who also charged us less than the norm.

A personal thanks to Marj for putting up with my fretting about - numbers turning up - have I have ordered too much beer? - will the auction be a success?.

And you know what? You never let the WBCRT down!

Thanks to you all, Jopo