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As usual, the weather forecast was uppermost in everyone's minds. The day did not get off to a good start when the rain started to fall and an overturned lorry delayed a couple of dancers and a musician. However, the dancing started only a few minutes later than scheduled in Rose Square to a small but appreciative audience. By then, the rain had stopped and the sun was out. The square was an excellent dancing surface and gave ample room for the dancers to spread out.
Pom and Trina experienced what it feels like to be in someone else's shoes - literally. In their haste to get ready to dance, they had each inadvertently put the other's clogs on. They didn't notice for a few dances and Pom found that Trina's seemed to fit better! If the clog fits ...
We then moved off to the High Street for another couple of stands. This part of Canterbury was much busier with shoppers and so we enjoyed a larger audience. In fact we unfortunately blocked the pavements a few times, such is the pulling power of Kettle Bridge in full flow. This also made it more difficult to "dance off" but Val gallantly forced her way through the crowds to lead the dancers into Marks & Spencers, not to reappear for several minutes!
M & S enjoyed more of our custom when we broke for lunch and made our way to the 2nd floor restaurant. There we all enjoyed an excellent snack. The toasted sandwiches proved very popular and featured a rather substantial pager that buzzed when your order was ready.
There was a "brief" opportunity for the ladies to stock up on their smalls as we left the shop on our way to our next High Street stand. The biggest problem was finding a spot to perform that was far enough away from the buskers who seemed to be on every street corner but large and level enough for our purposes. We eventually managed to find a couple of good locations and the ample audience were thoroughly entertained.
At one stage, we suffered from some unwelcome interference when a couple of local youths decided to show off by joining in with Cossington. They managed to knock Margaret's bobbin from her hand but the dancers continued in true professional style to complete dance.
We finished the day with some invited audience participation in the traditional Churchtown. As always, it went down very well and brought the day to a fitting end.
Special mention must be made of "the man with the hat". With such a large and appreciative crowd, it was important to capitalise and collect contributions from the audience, especially as we are saving hard for our 25th anniversary celebrations. Well done to Peter for all his sterling (and Euro) efforts in taking the hat round. He always has a word or two of thanks to all who give and this makes a real difference in maintaining the Kettle Bridge reputation.
Finally, a "well done" to all the dancers. There must have been around 20 dances performed but they gave it their all for the whole day with no noticable flagging. And we mustn't forget the band. They don't even get a break between dances as they continue to entertain the crowd while the dancers get their breath back.
All in all, an excellent day with good crowds and fine weather. Thanks again to Margaret for the organisation of a very successful day.