WOW! What an amazing and memorable day! This year’s Party in the Park on 11 June, in the words of many of the crowd, really was the best yet!
From its small-scale inception 20 years ago for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, Party in the Park has come a long way. This year, for the first time, we were obliged to fence and ticket our event, following Cherwell District Council’s advice – due to safety concerns and in line with local music festivals of similar size. The new arrangements were greeted initially with some scepticism by us and many of our PIP regulars. However, all earlier misgivings and worries proved on the day to be unfounded. Thanks largely to the beautiful weather, people who had hesitated to buy tickets sooner paid on the gate and flocked in to support us. It was fantastic! In addition, we have thankfully had not one incident reported, either in the village or on the field and incredibly, virtually no litter. Such a relief, after so many anxious weeks.
Party in the Park is hugely expensive to put on (£10,000 this year) and is run by a very small,  dedicated committee of professional and experienced volunteers who work hard as a team to bring it all together on the day.
So…. how do we fund it? As a totally non-profit making event, all monies raised are put towards holding PIP itself and (if we are lucky) towards it continuing in future years. Funds left over from previous events, food stalls and other concessions, a raffle on the day, fundraisers (of which there have sadly been none during the last two+ years) and other donations combine to help the event happen. Many thanks to all those local businesses and individuals who generously donated raffle prizes. Our sponsors this year, who also make a huge difference to our funds, are listed in no particular order: Smiths of Bloxham for skips and trailer; ATW for donating  all proceeds from  their Jubilee fundraiser; High Flyers afterschool and breakfast club; Fairport Convention;  Adderbury Contact;  Adderbury Food Market;  Edd Frost and Daughters Funeral Directors; TVR van hire; Ed Beaumont-Darke the power distribution box; Stanbra Powell; Rob Haynes for supplying haybales; Peter and Juniper for the loan of gazebos,  and finally , a very kind, unnamed sponsor from the village. We are hugely grateful to you all. Thanks also to all those volunteers who helped set up the event, sell raffle tickets, fetch and carry and clear the site on the Sunday.
And the day itself? Well, it was perfect, with blue skies and sunshine and a slight breeze. We couldn’t have wished for more:  families, grandparents, teens, toddlers, babies, dogs all thronged onto the field complete with gazebos, rugs, chairs and picnics and all with one intention – to have a relaxing day of music, food and fun in our beautiful village. Add to this a selection of food stalls: JoJo’s Pizzas; Caribbean Caterers; Frankly Fish and Chips; Mark’s Ices; Buzzy Bean’s coffee shop; two bars (the Football Club and BarKing); Vizard facepainter; Jack & Charmaine Rose’s small fairground with rides for children; Newman Events’ experienced security; Local Event Medics; Extra Loos mobile toilets and finally our amazing sound engineers Richard and crew from RN Audio. The scene was set! Most acts were booked for 20019 – before Covid hit and the range of music offered something for everyone.  Did you know all acts at PIP perform for free! Massive thanks to them all.
First up on the main trailer stage were talented four-piece local Indie Rock band The Skeme, performing for the first time at Party in the Park, with their own original material. I suspect they will soon be travelling further afield (forgive the pun!) and gaining an increasing fanbase! I thought they were fab!
The Emma Jane Kennedy Band were also new to PIP. Wow, what a great powerful voice Emma-Jane has – and a musical CV to match! A great band and a real treat for the Adderbury crowd.
Interspersing the mainstage acts, in the haybaled acoustic tent, artists performed throughout the afternoon to a receptive crowd. North Oxfordshire acoustic guitarist and singer Adrian Nicholas kicked off with a skilful mix of covers and originals; newly formed trio Harken Soul treated us to lovely harmonies and material from contemporary folk artists; Patrick Crow followed – another PIP returnee and ever-consummate performer with such a great voice and self-penned songs.  Rosie Samaras and the Buds, their first time at PIP smashed it with their acoustic pop and R&B covers – what a fab voice Rosie has!  FIddlebop, in their second time at PIP were passionate, lively and quirky and gave us a delightful mix of four-part harmonies and zingy gypsy jazz from all the jazz eras.
On mainstage, Jimmy Brewer, performed as one half of duo Smith and Brewer who, a couple of years ago played to great acclaim as the support act on a Fairport Convention winter tour. At PIP this year he performed solo. Jimmy is an accomplished guitarist and such a lovely, unassuming artist.  His thoughtful, soulful and skilfully performed songs were a joy to listen to.
Great to hear Sloe Train experienced blues musicians again in their second appearance on the Adderbury field and the first in a series of festival appearances this year.
With her mix of contemporary, folk and indie rock, atmospheric sounds and poignant lyrics Dolly Mavies is no stranger to the Party in the Park crowd. The band performed new songs from her upcoming debut album and new single Forgive and Forget. No wonder she has a string of gigs coming up this year!
Next up, the Seven O’clock Junkies performed a crowd-pleasing set of well-known material from the Beatles to REM to Bruce Springsteen to Blur and everything in between. Another welcome return to PIP.
Our pre-headline act and PIP favourites, Warwick Junction, performed a blinding set of well-known covers. Sounding better than ever, WJ, within moments, had the crowd up singing and dancing wildly! Fabulous!
Our headline act, the ever-popular Meanies, didn’t disappoint. What a way to end such an amazing day with the whole field dancing, singing and calling for more. Dickie and Co – we love you!
This event is put on for YOU and from the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU SO MUCH Adderbury (and visitors from surrounding areas!) you believed in us, supported us and showed your appreciation on the day and in amazing feedback since. This is what this beautiful village is about – Community spirit at its very best!
Linda Leslie on behalf of the Adderbury Party in the Park Committee

Rate this article

There are no comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address and phone number are required but will not be published.