What a wonderful buzzing, busy, long and rewarding day! Saturday dawned dry and stayed that way all day. On Friday afternoon we had laid out the tables and the model railway was set up, so all we had to do on Saturday morning was dress our stalls and welcome the crowds.
Sylvia had decided to make the Golden Spot Tombola special this year - all the top prizes were golden. Prizes for tickets with numbers ending in zero or five were grouped together and all the golden prizes (tickets had a gold star) were displayed on blocks wrapped in Christmas paper which made an inviting display. In addition, she asked her sister-in-law Sue to make and ice a Christmas Cake for us to raffle, so we had both the cake raffle and the tombola for the organ fund. Sue came to help sell tickets. We shifted a lot of prizes during the day including several teddies donated by Joan Jordan who left them to the organ fund when she died earlier this year. Dai, Dave, Sylvia, Sue and I took it in turns to run the stall all day.
Members of St Mary & St Giles Band played throughout the day except when the church school hand bell ringers came to play at 11am. In between band times, Dave K and Jacob played piano, keyboard or organ, so the church was filled with music for most of the day.
This year was the first time the new hall was available for the Christmas Fayre and it truly came into its own as it was the main refreshment hub and was busy most of time, with only a couple of short breaks in the crowds. I heard several compliments paid to the appearance of the hall during the day by people who were visiting the church for the first time.
We ran out of prizes by 4.30 pm (well only a few small ones left) and drew the cake raffle at the time - it was won by Fiona Ambrose. The organ fund group were very pleased to count £365.35 raised from the tombola and cake raffle (£231.00 tombola, £134.35 cake). The event continued until 6pm - people came in for refreshments as soon as the lights were switched on outside at 5pm after the lantern procession along Stony Stratford High street.
The following morning at the end of the Eucharist service, Fr Ross thanked everyone who helped and was able to announce that in addition to what was raised for the organ, £1011 was raised for the Church Restoration fund from refreshments, cake stall, raffle, book stall, bric a brac and donation buckets beside the model railway. We also had the Fairtrade, Little Lives, Willen and Kidney Research campaign stalls in the church for the day.