The Henley House and Gardens Show
The Henley House and Garden Show came back for the third time over a blustery weekend in March and it was an undoubted success for the town, which was the aim of its director, Niki Schäfer.
Her vision was to create something that Henley families could be a part of during a normally quiet time of year. Well, it seemed that they definitely came out in force to support the show.
The theme was ‘sustainability’ represented by butterflies and bees. Crowds of children learned about bees and honey from Honey’s of Henley whose stall was just under the vintage favourite Time for Tea Café in the Town Hall. And vintage was well represented with exhibitors such as Greenbough, Fawley Decorative Fair and Love Old Buildings.
Every now and then the oh-so familiar strains of the hit from the Greatest Showman would start, and a group of sparkly children would leap into life accompanied by adults in funky hats. The atmosphere in the packed marquee was jubilant and enthusiastic with main sponsor Mercer’s dishing out the champagne and advice, and many new exhibitors attracting attention.
The Creative Duck showcased some of their artisans and artists on the stage in the centre of the marquee so there was live life drawing, millinery and floristy, to name but a few skills on show. Upholsterers a Stitch in Time had an excellent display of their work and were on hand to answer questions.
The main hall of the Town Hall was busy throughout the two days with throngs looking at the exhibits which included Richardson art dealers, jewellers, ceramicists and textile designers.
The panel sessions in the chamber below attracted interested home owners with questions for the experts. Annie Sloane, the doyenne of chalk paint, spoke to a packed room about the versatility of her brightly coloured paints. Gardens were covered by Julia Kirkham, who was on hand all weekend to answer queries. Visitors left happily armed with, questions answered, new ideas and a great sense of community.