Yes, we did it again, but everyone
involved - or just curious enough to ask! - will know that it doesn't
happen without meticulous planning and dedicated hard work by a large
number of volunteers. Including the street striders who push our eagerly
anticipated orange leaflets (truly looked out for) through sometimes
un-cooperative letter boxes, we reckon that well over 200 people are
involved in our now pretty famous Book Fair. We had a few worrying
spells this year, when donations were piling in, right up against our
date deadlines and we were temporarily short of handlers and sorters.
But the Book Fair spirit saw us through to Wednesday afternoon and we
were ready for the invasion of the book dealers on Wednesday evening and
the long queue in Ashley Road on Thursday morning. The camaraderie, the
enjoyment (yes, honestly!), the fun, the job-satisfaction, and - let's
admit it - the exhaustion, aren't quantifiable, but the financial result
is. We raised £26,721, another increase on last year - a new record -
some £1,500 up on last year, after expenses (chiefly paper for flyers
and newspaper advertising) the money will be distributed to our chosen
charities for the year.
The largest beneficiaries will be
Action for Children, Action Duchenne, Epsom District Guides, with
smaller sums going to the EMC Family Worker Fund, 7th Epsom Scouts and
to EMC for our use of the premises.
All the organisations benefiting gave
us some help during the Fair, and Iain from Action Duchenne spoke
briefly at our Celebration Lunch about the research financed by this
charity. A comment overheard on a train from London: "Are you going to
Epsom Book Fair?" inspired our own song, to the tune of "Are you going
to Scarborough Fair?" which we sang at the Lunch, accompanied by Martin
Alexander on his violin. Ann Arthur, who organises the Book Fair
refreshments so superbly, was presented with some 'thank you' flowers;
one visitor to the Book Fair commented first, approvingly, on the
refreshments and, secondarily, on the books!
We'll be back next year, when we
expect the Zimbabwe Victims' Support Fund will be among the
beneficiaries, as voted at the Lunch. We hope our wonderful band of
volunteers will have recovered enough to be up for it again in February
2014 and we earnestly hope that there will be new helpers too! We need
you! Please come to a meeting on a Saturday morning in November for
veterans and novices.
With a big thank you from the Book Fair Committee:-
Betts, Janet de Bourcier, Audrey Oldfield. Jacqui Raggett and Chris