Exhibitors and visitors alike at the Royal Norfolk Show remained resolute in their determination to defy the weather as the rain cried tears of joy over this prestigious event last week. After splendid weather during the previous week, heavy rain hampered the efforts of the setting up parties on the Tuesday and then continued throughout Wednesday. Thursday proved drier but “feeble Phoebe” was once again only in evidence for short periods.
Undaunted by the climatic shortcomings those of us manning the Cursillo stand in the Diocese of Norwich marquee maintained a cheerful presence throughout the 2 days that the show was open.
In some measure this was in response to the entertainment on the main stage during both days and the offer of free tea and coffee whenever we asked at the refreshment stalls. Our mainstay however was the satisfaction of meeting and interacting with the many interested visitors who enquired about Cursillo. As well as handing out “Palanca” in the form of sweets with prayers attached, our “staff” also spoke to all three Bishops and the Dean of the Cathedral (who is also the RNS President this year) about the work of Cursillo in Norfolk. Several serious enquiries were taken and will be acted upon during our follow-up period.
It was gratifying to note the interest shown in Cursillo by our fellow exhibitors and friendships have been formed with many groups who work under the banner of the C of E in Norfolk.
An interesting observation shared by many was the spacious and welcoming nature of the Diocesan marquee. Visitors were able to come in, shelter from the rain and relax with a reasonably priced cup of tea and cakes whilst play areas were available for toddlers. This was in sharp contrast to the cramped stalls and pressurised atmosphere in the commercial marquees. Catering at the many fast-food stalls nearby was definitely in the premium price bracket although members of staff were pleased with the offerings at the cheese on toast stall nearby.
All in all a tiring but fulfilling couple of days for us which was well worth the effort. None of us needed any rocking to get off to a good nights sleep afterwards.