After the market we were due to attend in Rotherham was cancelled last minute; we were understandably gutted. This would have been our first event we could get out to and trade at post-lockdown. Months of having the bar parked up had left us itching to get out and meet new people.
Stock had been ordered, policies updated, and marketing hours put in towards advertising our attendance at the event.
Not wanting our efforts to have been in vain we only had one other option, to try and submit a license request to the council for us to go ahead and hold our own little mini event locally with our lovely vintage bar. What was the worst that could happen? The council could deny the license and/or we could have nobody turn up on the day. I am happy to say we did not let that stop us.
The application was submitted last minute; and by last minute, I mean bang on the deadline of 5pm Friday. All we could do was wait to hear if the license were to be granted. In the meantime, we created posters and flyers, nothing could be done with them however until confirmation came through.
The following Thursday (just three days before the event) we have the go ahead!! Fabulous, our mobile bar could come out of hibernation. We had the posters shared online immediately. Leaflets were then posted through doors in the surrounding area alerting locals of what was in store and inviting them along.
The day came and after showers in the days before the weather was on our side. Set up complete and our little bar sat on the green in all its glory; would anyone come? Had we been able to give people enough notice on a bank holiday weekend?
We need not have worried, by 2pm when the bar was due to open, we already had our first customers lining up. People were intrigued to come and see our lovely bar and to be able to socialise at a distance with others after the last few months.
We had a steady flow of customers throughout the day, some came for one drink and to say hello before being on their merry way. While others made use of the seating provided (or even brought their own when we ran out) and stayed for the duration enjoying the atmosphere and the conversation. Even when the sun disappeared, the blankets were brought out and the hardy Brit in us all not allowing the cooler weather to take away the fact that it is still summer!! As evening approached and bar snacks no longer cutting it, we ordered pizzas. Kavarni’s came within 45 minutes and you’ll be pleased to know, they cut it! With only an hour or so until curfew remaining and after the delivery driver being so nice and complimentary about our bar, we demolished every last bite and saw out our first successful service.
After so many amazing comments from everyone on the day and even from those that did not manage to make it due to previous commitments, we will be looking at holding another get together on the green. It was not only a success, but it was great to encourage the coming together of the community. Neighbours socialising and even strangers meeting for the first time making new friends. It really was just what we all needed after such a difficult 2020.
Hopefully the next time we are able to stage an event like this the world resembles something like the normality we knew pre Covid and we are able to greet and socialise with our neighbours and community in the way we would all wish for. In the moment though, it was great to be able to put something like this on our last bank holiday of the year and we look forward to more adventures with the bar to come.