The 2018 Convention

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Charles
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The 2018 Convention

Postby Charles » Mon 13 Nov, 2017 21:08:48

Dear All,

We are fresh back from the 2017 Convention and it's time to start planning for the 2018 Convention !

Please sharpen your pencils and put the date in your (electronic ?) diaries ... the 2018 Convention will be held on Saturday 13th October 2018 ... and of course at Elstree.

Best as always ... and again congratulations to those who made our Tenth such a roaring success ...
Last edited by Charles on Mon 6 Aug, 2018 19:20:07, edited 1 time in total.
Charles

Charles
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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby Charles » Fri 3 Aug, 2018 21:16:59

Dear All,

Rather later in the year than usual because of a change in management at The Laura Ashley The Manor Hotel in Elstree, I now have firm prices for the Convention and am accepting bookings.

This year's booking arrangements are going to be rather different to previous years because - in confidence - the hotel's package for the Convention plus Accommodation was going to be unduly expensive.

I am therefore just arranging for the Convention day (i.e. our use of the Arkeley Room, lunch, dinner and teas and coffees throughout the day - as usual drinks at lunch and dinner excluded and paid for separately) and leaving everyone to make their own arrangements for accommodation, either at the Laura Ashley itself, or nearby. I am advised by Declan that there are quite a number of 'chain hotels' in the vicinity, so hopefully if you want accommodation somewhere other than the Laura Ashley, it won't be too hard to find.

To book the Laura Ashley itself, either ring the hotel direct (020-8953-8227) or book online using the proverbial Booking.com or similar. Experience shows the latter may well be cheaper but you might wish to compare both.

The price for the day (including lunch and dinner) will be £120 per person. As usual we are simply passing on the hotel's costs and not taking anything out of it, but if we get lots more attendees than I am expecting (I am, not surprisingly, reckoning on thirteen, as that number has an uncanny way of cropping up at our Conventions !) and there is any surplus (which I doubt) it will be put towards the mineral waters and wines at meal times.

Lunch will be the usual buffet. For dinner we will have three choices of starter, of main course and of dessert, and as usual we will be asked to make our selections before the day. I haven't seen the menus yet.

Ken and Duncan will be separately advising you of some of the events which will be on offer.

I will be putting a copy of this in the Library, and responses as soon as you decently can, please.

Unless the hotel change things in that respect also, I will only be asking for monies a few weeks before the Convention date.

All I need at this stage is firm 'Yes's or 'No's please.

Kind regards as always,
Charles

ken68
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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby ken68 » Sat 4 Aug, 2018 10:23:48

Hello all,
It has been suggested that most people would prefer to know what delights they can look forward to on the "big day". As it also gives us all a chance to prepare for any sections where input is helpful.
So with that in mind here is what we can look forward to this year,

The highlight will no doubt be a guest speaker who will give us a talk on rolo Ahmed, followed by a q&a.
This is obviously difficult to have an exact time on, but we expect it to finish between 12.15 and 12,30

Before lunch, in whatever time remaining, Duncan has suggested we throw open the subject of " Is Roger Brook the secret agent DW would liked to have been?"

After lunch and our traditional group photograph, Declan will continue his increasingly entertaining stroll down DW scroll of drink. I'm beginning to think of this as a slightly drunken stumble of good humour and ribaldry through DW scroll, and one he himself would have thoroughly enjoyed.

Ending on a high note, Anna will present a talk on this summer's field trip for those of us who couldn't attend.

As usual we will finish the afternoons entertainment with a future plans discussion.

It is till our intention to hold a cocktail party, although there is some planning already done, because of the situation with the hotel details on where exactly are not yet confirmed.

Thanks as always to Charles for all his efforts and to everyone else involved in the planning and execution.

Ken

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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby Darren » Sat 4 Aug, 2018 12:33:37

Hi Folks,

There was some discussion last year about changing the Friday night format to have an evening in a traditional pub that serves meals and, in particular, real ales. If some are staying elsewhere but nearby this year then this might be a reasonable option.

Last year Shane suggested the Cat and Fiddle at Radlett, but their website seems to have closed down.

There is also the Mops and Brooms, a rural public house at Borehamwood that has reasonably priced traditional pub food with a wide range of real ales that they seem proud of - always a good sign. https://www.mcmullens.co.uk/mopsandbrooms

And there is the Waggon & Horses at Elstree - a bit more upmarket but it has a range of real ales (the picture includes Doom Bar - groan). I am always suspicious of pubs with websites that do not promote what ales they sell. https://waggonpub.co.uk/

Does anyone have any local knowledge that can recommend anywhere? I know Steve and Jean often eat out on the Friday night.
Regards,

Darren.

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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby Darren » Sat 4 Aug, 2018 14:23:19

This 19th century inn is nearby and looks pleasant - with loads of ale. https://www.chefandbrewer.com/pubs/hert ... _campaign=
Regards,



Darren.

ken68
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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby ken68 » Mon 6 Aug, 2018 12:35:50

well remembered darren .we were still intending to try somewhere else on the friday night, and with the hotels attitude i would be even more inclined to spend our money elsewhere.

ken68
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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby ken68 » Mon 6 Aug, 2018 16:57:42

we've booked rooms at the manor through expedia. we used expedia because we have a cancelation clause until 12th of october.

whilst looking for a hotel in the area i found this
https://www.village-hotels.co.uk/hotels/london-watford/

its not far from the manor so can we check it out as a possible future venue?
can i suggest a small trip at some time over the convention weekend?

ken

shanedwyer
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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby shanedwyer » Fri 10 Aug, 2018 13:06:20

Darren wrote:This 19th century inn is nearby and looks pleasant - with loads of ale. https://www.chefandbrewer.com/pubs/hert ... _campaign=


Ten years ago, I was very familiar with the rural pubs of south Hertfordshire, but recently, considerably less so. A lot would have changed (as is evinced by the seeming disappearance of the Cat and Fiddle) since the time I could claim to be a reliable guide. However, I'd hate for you all to choose the wrong pub and have a disappointing evening, so I feel I should add what little knowledge I have to the discussion. Here goes:

The Battleaxes
With the caveat that all may have changed for the better, the 'Axes' only ever served the most anodyne and microwaved of pub fare and was aimed at attracting young families.

The Waggon and Horses
Could be great, but never dependently so. Its current Tripadvisor reviews suggest that things haven't changed all that much. I've sent food back here. A shame because it's a place of great charm, has a ghost and is near to the hotel.

The Three Horseshoes
https://www.threehorseshoes.info/
This was a wonderful place when the old landlord Gary was running it. Good beer, great steak and friendly locals- all happening in a wonderful building that had been serving ales for an uninterrupted three hundred years. Unless things have gone downhill precipitously, this would be the one I'd choose.

The Fishery Inn
https://www.mcmullens.co.uk/fishery-inn
Is the pub nearest to the hotel. It was lovely a decade ago, with a cosy interwar feel and nice food. Although its takeover and makeover by the McMullens chain hasn't quite worked in my opinion (I was there last year and the non-standard pint glass I was served my beer in was just wrong), I'd make this my second choice.

shanedwyer
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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby shanedwyer » Fri 10 Aug, 2018 13:09:30

PS: Darren- I'm with you on the Doom Bar. If I'd mentioned it in the above post, I'd have been using the word 'anodyne' twice.

Jim
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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby Jim » Sun 19 Aug, 2018 13:38:28

Charles wrote: Rather later in the year than usual because of a change in management at The Laura Ashley The Manor Hotel in Elstree, I now have firm prices for the Convention and am accepting bookings.

This year's booking arrangements are going to be rather different to previous years because the hotel's package for the Convention plus Accommodation was going to be unduly expensive.

I am therefore just arranging for the Convention day (i.e. our use of the Arkeley Room, lunch, dinner and teas and coffees throughout the day - as usual drinks at lunch and dinner excluded and paid for separately) and leaving everyone to make their own arrangements for accommodation, either at the Laura Ashley itself, or nearby.

I'm sad to read this. I have only attended the one Convention, but I found the arrangements at The Manor to be very nice, and not outlandish in cost. Because of personal issues that year, my decision to cross The Pond was made at the last minute, and they didn't fuss about a deposit (since I was joining the established group), but made it very easy for me to attend. I had also looked at other accommodations in the area (so I know they're out there), but decided that--factoring in the cost and inconvenience of taxis--it was worth the money to stay with everyone else.

I hope everybody who does go will have a splendid time...

Charles
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Re: The 2018 Convention

Postby Charles » Sun 19 Aug, 2018 22:48:44

Thanks, Jim,

Any chance you might be able to join us ?

I can't overstate how much we all enjoyed your company last time ...
Charles


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