A GOOD END TO THE SUMMER

After a long hot summer, which ripened fruit and vegetables early, there were fears that the Congresbury Gardening Club Autumn Show would be a wipe out, but the village produced excellent entries on September 29 in the Old School Rooms.

One casualty was the courgette class, where, after a glut throughout the summer, there were only two entries.

Villagers were delighted that, after an absence due to poor health, Bill Maggs was back showing again, with superb vegetables and flowers, and he rightly took home the Members cup for his best exhibit of specimen chrysanthemums, dahlias, gladioli and zinnia.

His staggering entry of three leeks, nearly 3 ft. long, gained him the Best vegetable exhibit and the Hughes-Games cup.

In previous years, there has been a dearth of entries in the allotments class, but this year has revived with five entries, and a new exhibitor Dawn Odoi took home the Tom Richards cup with her display of calabrese, potatoes, sweetcorn and broccoli.

Derek Newcombe entered a splendid pair of butternut squash to beat the other five colourful entries, and apple queen this year is definitely Pat Sills, the winner in four apple classes.

However, the best apple entry was judged the huge Bramley, grown by Robin Lee, gaining him the Tom Day silver challenge bowl.

After years of gardening, John Chaplin joined the Gardening Club last year and then started showing, and he is definitely a winner. 

With consistent prizes in both flower and vegetable classes,  including massive parsnips, he easily won the George Mills trophy for the member with the most points, for the second year running.

However, it was disappointing that he did not enter his famous grapes; apparently, he intended to and forgot them!

There were some beautiful entries in the flower arranging section, with Maggie Bissett, Jenny Edwards and Sue Dury featuring among the prizewinners.

Once again, Gordon Burgin has beaten our lady cooks with his delicious sponge, judged the best domestic exhibit, winning the Ward trophy for the second year running. He’s no slouch in the garden either, as his enormous cabbage testifies!

Namesake Gordon Bunney was tops in the photographic classes, where his solitary figure sitting on a huge stone wall, titled “The Onlooker” gained the Jubilee cup for the best photo.

As always, the children’s entries were outstanding. 

There were 48 entries of Autumn art work, by under six year-olds, with Ivy Lang using colour, texture and shape to the judge’s delight for first prize.

Laura Kestrell’s leaf drawing beat a huge number of entries from under eight year-olds to win first prize, and the water colour by Grace Frost, in the under 11 year olds, proved the best.

Although the only entry in the children’s photo class, the action shot of a girl leapfrogging, taken by Chloe Chetland, was rightly judged the best exhibit across non school entries.

Show Organiser Maggie Shrubshall was amazed at the high standard of entries from the 52 exhibitors, contributing to an excellent show. Sadly, after six years organising, she has indicated that this will be her last show.

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