Griston Festival Committee


2018 Festival - a roaring success! A glorious day and the crowds turned out to have fun on the Recreation Park and later at the Waggon & Horses. As a result, £1,000 will be donated to both the East Anglian Air Ambulance and Watton First Responders - the remaining profit, in excess of £700, will be allocated to the village of Griston. Well done the organising committee and thank you to everyone who attended, helped and supported the event in any way.

2018 Festival Pictures

Here are 3 of the Dog Show winners - from left to right, Theo (Best In Show), Lexi (Best Puppy) and Vinnie (Best Veteran)

Below are the 3 winners in the 'Find The Babes' competition (first to 3rd, left to right). Well done and thanks to all who took part.


Two cheques, each for £1,000, were  presented to representatives from E.A.C.H  and Home Start on Thursday September 21st at 10.30am outside the Waggon & Horses. 


 1. The Chairman extended a welcome to all present. 

 2. Apologies for absence were received from Tracey Johnson, Bryan Reece, Jean Williams and one member of the public.

 2a) Appointment of the committee. The following were all appointed to the committee by unanimous vote, as were the posts of chairman, treasurer and secretary; Nicky Hornsey (Chairman), Rose Woolhouse (Treasurer and joint correspondence secretary), Caroline Archer , Marie McGuinness (joint correspondence secretary), Jean Williams (minutes secretary), Sue Parkin, David Barnett, Kathryn Hird, Audrey Barnett, Bryan Reece  

3. Chairman’s report – see below. 

4. Treasurers report – see below

5. Adoption of a constitution. A constitution document was presented to the committee members and adopted by unanimous vote. 

 6. How the money for the parish is to be used. After much discussion, it was resolved unanimously that the £1,021.35 would be split into 3 equal parts and used as follows;

i) To assist the Parish Council with the costs of clearing of the land on Carbrooke Road currently being purchased. 

 ii) Subject to successful discussions with the P.C.C., to assist with the costs of electrical work required to bring the parish room on Church Road back into use. 

 iii) The final third to be kept by the Griston Festival Committee for funds to use as appropriate for future events.  

7. The date of next year’s festival was set for the weekend of June 23rd/24th 

 8. After an open forum, many ideas were put forward for next year, including having 2 ‘rings’, one for the dog show and another for other activities. 

 9. Date of the next meeting was set for Thursday 19th October at 1900hrs – venue T.B.A.


 Last November, not long after the village sign had been replaced, David Barnett reported to the Parish Council that his wife Audrey had suggested that we hold a village Festival based on the Babes in the Wood theme. A few of us decided to look into the possibility, and a plan began to emerge. Our first meeting brought new faces, and with a loan of £1000 from the Parish Council, we began to make plans. It wasn’t an easy task, initially we met with a fair bit of negativity in the village, but we soldiered on. 

 Gradually things started to take shape, a car boot sale and music event on the Saturday, followed by a dog show and fun day on the Sunday, as well as a Hunt the Babes competition. There were several knockbacks, but finally we found somewhere to hold each event. 

 I have to say we all worked very hard, both individually and as a team. If something needed doing, someone would know someone or would just do it themselves. Scott gave us enormous support and guidance, the music night wouldn’t have happened without his help. The weather was kind to us, and it didn’t rain till at least twenty minutes after we had finished. Clearing away was done in a fraction of the time it had taken to set up! 

 We made enough money to repay the Parish Council, and raised £1000 for each of our causes, Homestart, EACH and the Parish. We would like to build on this year’s success, and make it an annual event. The feedback was positive, but we really need more people to come forward and get involved. This is your village, tell us what you want. 

 Thank you to everyone who was involved, whether as part of the Committee, in attending the events, putting Babes outside your house, or, as one visitor to the show did, whipping your shirt off and jumping into the stocks to have wet sponges thrown at him. 

 We received a letter shortly after the festival, thanking us for our hard work. It ended ‘Finally, to all the committee members and their helpers, a very big thank you for your hard work. this is the village I was hoping for when moving here many years ago’. 

 Nicky Hornsey,  August 2017


 There are copies of the Accounts summary for those who are interested. 

 It was with some trepidation that the Griston Festival Committee embarked on this venture, we had plenty of enthusiasm but not a lot of confidence that we would success in raising sufficient funds to repay the Griston Parish Council Loan let alone make enough to contribute to our nominated charities. 

 The total monies received, including the £1,000.00 Griston PC loan, amounted to £5,256.99. The balance was made up of sponsorship, money donations, money from the sale of the prize draw tickets, the auction and raffle on the Saturday night, the fun dog show, the BBQ, games etc and the car boot. 

 Our outgoings where £1,235.64. This included the expenditure in arranging the prize draw, including the cash prizes, public liability insurance, materials for games and signs, the bands for Saturday night, which were heavily subsidised by Scott, food and drinks for the BBQ and sweets for prizes, plus a loud hailer and collection box. 

 The net amount we have for distribution is £4,021.35. this will be allocated as to £1,000.00 loan repayment to Griston PC, £1,000.00 to EACH, £1,000,00 to Home Start and £1,000.00 for the benefit of Griston Parish. 

 For next year’s Festival, some of this year’s expenditure will fall out, the signs and the games that were made will all be used again next year, as will the loud hailer and collection box, also the cost of the Licence for the Draw will reduce to a renewal fee of £20, a total saving of £168.20. Also, we hope to finance next year’s Festival by applying for grants, which we hope will cover the cost of the Festival and will make it unnecessary to apply to the Griston Parish Council for a loan. Hopefully this will free up more funds for the charities and the Village. 

 None of this would have been possible without the amazing generosity of the local (and sometimes not so local) businesses and people, and the volunteers who worked so hard to make things run smoothly and make the whole venture a success. 

 Perhaps we should have had a little more confidence at the beginning. Thank you. 

Rose Woolhouse, August 2017 

What a fantastic weekend it turned out be on 24th & 25th June. Saturday started with the children out and about around the village looking for the 25 'Babes' placed in gardens by residents - and how great were some of those? All are pictured below.

Having enjoyed a successful 'Lazy Car Boot Sale' in the grounds of Thorp House the action moved to the Waggon & Horses

Above (top row L - R) Jamie Currie pipes in the opening party, Stan Hebborn, Mayor of Watton makes the formal opening speech, Nicky Hornsey, Chairman of Griston Festival Committee gives a few words of thanks and later on, Scott Currie, landlord of the Waggon & Horses auctions donations for charities. Middle row (L - R) the evening's entertainment was provided by 'Last Orders', The 'Ratz Pack' and Tom Bainbridge. Bottom row the crowds enjoying burgers, hot dogs and great music

Sunday saw the fun move to the recreation park on Manor Road. Hundreds turned up in the fine weather to enter the 'Fun Dog Show', play the many games or buy a burger or a hot dog. Pictured above (from top left clockwise) the dog show winners, face painting, dog show under way, the 'Wicked Uncle' in the stocks getting wet sponges thrown at him, the tractor display and the winners of the decorated cake and flower arrangement competitions.