I think most readers of the blog who have visited the Chasewater Transport Show over the last few years have found it to be a fun, well organised and lovely event. I always attend, and find it relaxed, enjoyable and safe. Organiser Helen Borton works incredibly hard to stage this free event, and presents a show which is diverse, entertaining and very professionally run.
In short, the Chasewater Transport Show is an asset to Chasewater and the local area. It pulls in a huge number of exhibitors and spectators, all of whom get to see the park and the attractions it holds – including the Cafes, Chasewater Railway and so forth.
[Added 27th April 1:14am] Helen says ‘We raised £1526.26 in donations to be split 75% to Epilepsy Action and 25% to Brownhills detachment of the Army Cadet Force.’
It is my belief that we should be encouraging this type of enterprise to best stimulate use of the country park, and to show people that there’s more to this area than many folk believe.
With that it mind, I was saddened to receive from Helen yesterday a copy of a mail she’s sent to Chasewater Park Manager John Smith, an employee of Lichfield District Council, as well as other interested parties.
It seems there’s some friction over the Transport Show. This saddens me greatly – I would have imagined the Railway and classic vehicles to be natural bedfellows, and mutually beneficial to each other. I wandered up to the railway on Sunday and it was very busy indeed. Perhaps my money isn’t the sort they want up there…
I also echo Helen’s concerns about antisocial behaviour up at Chasewater in the evenings and at night. Some evenings you can get high just cycling along the dam. This needs police action as a matter of priority.
I’ll let Helen explain. I’ve removed some names, which I can provide on request.
Comment is invited from all parties, but please be aware that I reserve the right to edit comments for legal reasons. Your understanding is appreciated.
To Park Manager John Smith & all persons involved with the event yesterday.
The event was again very sucessful all on levels and we received plenty of positive comments from exhibitors, traders and public. Some of which were first time visitors to the park and local residents who rarely utilise the parks facilities. One gentleman actually said to me (which I found amusing) that he hasn’t got a dog, he doesn’t like boats or trains and he doesn’t like walking, so why would he come to Chasewater any other day of the year? After finding his comment slightly funny, I thought deeper into his comment. He is in my mind absolutely right.
The main objectives of the event are firstly to organise a transport show with the aim to raise funds for a nominated charity each year, to provide the local community with a free admission event suitable for the entire family and finally to increase the local and national awareness and usage of Chasewater Country Park and its facilities.
Again, we have met all of our objectives and the event was a success.
Firstly, I have a major complaint regarding the staff/volunteers at Chasewater Railway.
Whilst I was directing the exhibitors, I was aided by a companion.
A volunteer from the railway, came to us and began swearing. She was abusive, rude and as she drove away, she put her arm out of the window and put her fingers up at us. All because she had been in a short queue.
There were also several other members of the railway who were rude to us.
Secondly, again railway related, an official at the railway stopped to speak with me. He said the ‘calibre’ of visitors he has at ‘his’ railway during my event were ‘different’ to his usual clientele. He also said that on my event day, it is the worst day of the year for his railway as the public do not visit and his takings are reduced compared to a normal weekend.
He also said, after a meeting last week, the railway has put an official objection in to Staffordshire County Council opposing the event. He then went on to say that an attendee at a recent meeting said that my event is not something that Staffordshire County Council want for the park.
In response to his comment, I can only assume that the gentleman does not live in the local area. If he does, he is clearly discriminatory to people who reside or originate from the areas surrounding the park.
I feel that the park attendance may be suffering due to his views and this is a concern which I have also raised with Staffordshire County Council.
There were no event related accidents or incidents which resulted in injury or harm.
Finally, I was still at the park until 11pm last night litter picking. I feel I need to raise a major security issue with you about Chasewater Park. Whilst I was there, several cars were coming into the park and were parking on the public car park. The smell of marajuana coming from the vehicles was horrendous.
I watched one vehicle drive up to the exit electronic floor ramp, get out of his car with a small metal box and he placed the metal box onto the floor of the exit barrier to activate the sensors beneath the concrete.
Maybe this is something the park needs to address.
Please contact me if you should need to.