The Annual Forncett Garden Produce Show proved to be as popular as ever this year. It took place on a September Saturday bathed in such intense sunshine it seemed summer was trying to make late amends for its earlier capriciousness. Summer had moved into the Village Hall too. Trestle tables laden with blooms, flower arrangements and vegetables created banks of colour which surrounded the central displays. A busy hum of voices continued through the afternoon as friends met, examined and discussed the merits of entries and relaxed over refreshments.
When the doors opened at 2.00 p.m., the judges had already concluded their careful reviews and made their final decisions. They had been rewarded with a fine lunch and wine and thanks must go to all kind and generous contributors to this. The judges included two, Terry and Maureen Rands, who were celebrating their Golden Wedding Anniversary on that day. We were indebted to them for giving up part of such a special day to use their considerable knowledge on our behalf. Terry and Maureen are organic gardeners from Ovington near Watton. Other judges, to each of whom we are very grateful, included: Olive Rouse who judged handcrafts , Pat Reid, the pickles, jellies, chutneys and jams, Heather Jury, the baking and Christine Hewson, who was responsible for flower arrangements.
The various entries represented a great response from the village in all classes. Many were from members of Diggers and Dibblers but some were not. It was a delight to see the boxes of mixed vegetables, many from the allotments which are becoming well established and productive. As usual there was a mix of entries, often unexpected and intriguing, especially in the handcraft section. One lovely entry from Janet Cutting, called ‘The Angel of Cross-stitch’, used every possible colour of thread (300 apparently), and took 6 months to complete. Another was an endearing knitted sailor from H.M.S. Forncett which will be auctioned at a future event. A traditional Parkin recipe was very popular. One entrant confessed he had tried four times before he was satisfied with his effort.
Visitors included two members of the Diss Constabulary, (helping the judges with their enquiries?) who seemed delighted with their refreshments and the Show in general and clearly found us all to be in order. Of course such an event is only possible when a number of people work extremely hard and others are generous with time and resources. Thanks go to all on the Diggers and Dibblers Committee who lent their enthusiasm and time and others, who lent resources, carried heavy objects, swept, washed-up or helped in any way.