Over 2,100 was the estimated attendance over the day of the Aylestone Boat Gathering at Aylestone Park in Hereford on 22 May 2011.
Families enjoyed all the activities and attractions on offer including steam engines, vintage cars, and boat trips.
The event was arranged to celebrate the completion of the new slipway as the first phase of our restoration of this section of the Canal in the City of Hereford, and to raise awareness of the Trust’s work on the Canal both within the City, and beyond.
Organised by the Herefordshire and Gloucestershire Canal Trust, Aylestone Park Association, the Waterway Recovery Group and other local support.
Several trail boats used the newly completed slip way, built by H&GCT volunteers, and were the first boats to use this section of the canal since the 1880’s.
The year’s second festival weekend at Over was again blessed with dry weather.
The new attractions for the weekend included some very beautiful birds of prey and a boat horse called Gypsy Queen who was a firm favourite with the visitors.
Trips around the basin in Mister Maysey proved very popular as did guided tours to our newly acquired restoration site at Vineyard Hill. A good number of people eager to see the next length of the canal in water signed up to join the volunteers on site or to help in other ways.
Lively music from a fairground organ gave the whole event a relaxed air. The busy refreshment stand was bursting with home-made cakes and sandwiches whilst a barbecue provided some great hot dogs. At The Wharf House there were a good number number of local beers and ciders as well as the ever popular Tapas on the Terrace. In the marquee is a wide range of crafts and produce were on sale.
The IWA branch ran a bookstore and tombola in support of Trust funds. The model boat club provided further entertainment with the demonstrations and displays and the Saturday saw on attendance from the Fire Brigade.
Although the Saturday was not as busy as the spring open weekend the visitor numbers picked up on the Sunday and record sales of Grand Holiday Draw tickets were achieved.
Altogether a lot of people came together and put great effort into making the weekend a success – a big thank you to all involved.
Herefordshire & Gloucestershire Canal Trust’s ‘Over Festival on the Canal 2014’ was the most successful yet.
The annual ‘Over Festival on the Canal’ was the largest so far. The site including the canal basin at Over, was visited by more than 1000 people to savour and discover and enjoy the wide variety of attractions in near perfect weather. The site is also the head office of the Herefordshire & Gloucestershire Canal Trust and Visitor Centre at The Wharf House, the AA-Red Rosette-awarded Restaurant with Rooms.
Entrance to the Festival was free, for all to enjoy the usual sideshows and stalls associated with a family fun day out. There was obviously a watery theme, enhanced by visitor participation with a Model Boat regatta, Fire Brigade displays and canoeing and kayaking. The Canal Trust’s own heritage boats provided tours of the canal to Vineyard Hill. This year included the addition of Shetland ponies to provide rides for children, circus skills and other attractions in partnership with the Scout Network.
There were large marquees housing a range of local produce and crafts for sale, including local beers, cider and perry. There was the largest programme to date of live music on the river terrace with The Wharf House providing refreshments of Tapas and a hugely successful Beer Festival.
For everyone there the message of canal restoration through Herefordshire & Gloucestershire Canal Trust was implicit everywhere.
Herefordshire & Gloucestershire Canal Trust is grateful for the generous support of Gloucester Quays and the Gloucestershire Network of Scouts in mounting this Festival.
View Event Photo Gallery…
The Festival next year will be held on Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 August 2015.
Over Festival 2017 Report – Volunteer Jenny Birkett reports on her first Over Festival experience….
..being a new volunteer, I was impressed to see how the volunteers got on with our jobs in good humour. After Friday’s preparation it was great to see the Festival take shape on Saturday morning in time for the visitors.
My role was to help in the refreshment tent very ably organised by Margaret. The donated cakes just appeared, and I soon got into the team effort providing cuppas and cake. Maggie asked me to take some photos too, so I could excuse myself from the washing up and enjoy what was going on around the site.
The weather was kind, so our visitors were able to enjoy all the Festival had to offer, relaxing by the water, listening to music, watching the model boats, the trip boats and a lively demonstration by the Gloucestershire Fire Service Search and Rescue team.
I thoroughly enjoyed being part of the volunteer team, which by working together created a very successful event.
This year’s Festival promises to offer another fun weekend around Over Basin with an even bigger craft and produce marquee, boat trips, walks, fun for the children, demonstrations and refreshments.
Meanwhile, on the terrace at The Wharf House, a second part to the event with some great local bands playing and an excellent array of beers, ciders and perrys. There will be the popular Wharf House cream teas as well as a BBQ.
The following week there will be a continuation of festivities at Malswick House.
Beer, Cider, Live Music & Hog Roast
Saturday 26 August 2017, starting 4pm on the edge of Newent.
Free admission to both events.
We hope you can make it!
Come and find out more about our plans for Newent Station.
In Oxenhall Village Hall: • Guided Walks • Refreshments • Displays • Sales Stand • Tombola.
Also, learn about our new site just a short distance away at Malswick.
Parking at Oxenhall – follow the signs.
We hope to see you there!
Nick Worthington – What is going on with Canal and River Trust in our area