May Revels

Oakridge School held its annual May Revels on Saturday 18th May. It was a fun, family friendly event that helped raise vital funds for the school.

There was a fantastic line up of activities, including go kart racing around the village green, welly wanging, worm racing, tug of war, live music, a reading corner, a petting area, a well stocked bar and a sizzling BBQ. There were also traditional crafts that included pottery.

Traditional wooden stalls decorated with colourful bunting were dotted around the village green, creating the feeling of a quintessential country fair. Delicious home made cakes adorned gingham table cloths, while other stalls sold plants, toys and books. There was a raffle and tombola, giant bouncy castle, stocks, hook a duck and face painting.

The petting area was a new addition to this year's Revels. There was a variety of different animals for children to stroke and hold including rabbits, chickens, lambs, stick insects and a tortoise.

The reading corner provided a cosy hub situated close to the bar so people could peruse and purchase at their leisure with drink in hand. Old library shelves stocked an extensive collection of pre loved books, while straw bales, deck chairs, bean bags and rugs provided a snug for chat and stories.

The bar was well stocked with traditional craft ales, ready made cocktails and a selection of gins. An extended bar and bistro ran late into the evening, creating a lovely chilled atmosphere. There was a fabulous line up of activities, and it was a real joy to photograph.

If you have an event coming up and would like it professionally photographed, then please get in touch using my contact page or send an email to info@mouseabouttown.co.uk. Alternatively, give me a call on 07983 465414. Thanks!

Townswomen's Guilds AGM

Last month I was booked to cover the Townswomen’s Guild’s AGM. The venue was Cheltenham Racecourse. It was a full on day starting sharp at 7.30am. The shot list was extensive and there was a very special guest to photograph too: HRH The Princess Royal.

The day began with setting up shots of the stalls and stands followed by the arrival of the townswomen. Proceedings got underway with the main speakers introducing the banner procession, of which there were fifty plus, all of which required individual photographs. Guest speakers followed and voting commenced. HRH The Princess Royal made a speech and handed out awards, after which there was a break for lunch and a meet and greet. Proceedings resumed with further speakers and culminated in a short cabaret performance from the some of the townswomen.

It was a full on day, but extremely good fun and I met some lovely people. The highlight, personally, was of course photographing royalty. Very special.

If you have an event coming up and would like it professionally photographed, then please get in touch using my contact page or send an email to info@mouseabouttown.co.uk. Alternatively, give me a call on 07983 465414. Thanks!

Prostate Cancer Ball

I was recently asked to cover a prostate cancer ball in Cheltenham. It was a charity event so I wavered my fee. I was booked for an hour to capture the arrival of guests and some mingling before they went into sit down for the meal and silent auction. There was a Prosecco bar on arrival, followed by canapés and the opportunity to enter the raffle. Everyone was dressed to the nines and I could see they were going to be in for a good night.

If you have an event coming up and would like to book something similar then please get in touch using my contact page or send an email to info@mouseabouttown.co.uk. Alternatively, give me a call on 07983 465414. Thank you.

Victoria Cross Centenary

Last week I was booked to cover the commemoration ceremony to honour Lance Corporal Allan Leonard Lewis VC, who was awarded the Victoria Cross for his acts of bravery during WW1. The ceremony marked the Centenary of this special event with the unveiling of a statue in his honour along with a very poignant service.

There was a big turnout as members of the public lined the streets and soldiers performed the guard of honour. The gorgeous sunshine didn’t last long, but despite the deluge of rain, (I don't think I've ever got quite so drenched on a shoot!) men, women and children stood united to remember and celebrate the achievements of this remarkable soldier.

If you have an event coming up that you would like professionally photographed then please get in touch. I can price according to budget. Just get in touch using my contact page or give me a call on 07983 465414. Thanks!

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Mulligan's VIP Night

I was recently booked to cover the VIP night of the new Mulligan's Adventure Golf Course that has just opened in the Brewery quarter of Cheltenham. It was a super fun night. I spent the first hour capturing the setting of the golf course and the remaining three hours photographing people in full swing, (excuse the pun) enjoying the different holes and tees. No flash was used in any of the pictures.

If you have an event coming up that you would like professionally photographed then please do get in touch using the form on my contact page. Alternatively please call me on 07983 465414. Thanks.

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High School Prom

Last Tuesday evening I was at Manor By The Lake for St Andrew's High School prom. I'm more accustomed to photographing weddings at this lovely venue in Cheltenham but it's always nice to get a job that's a little bit different.   

If you have an event coming up that you would like professionally photographed then please do get in touch using the form on my contact page. Alternatively please call me on 07983 465414. Thanks.

Playhouse Theatre Family Day

On Sunday 22nd March, The Playhouse Theatre held a family fun day, all in aid of Cheltenham's community theatre.

I managed to get down there for an hour or so, despite having my cake smash marathon event on the same day, (pics from that event being uploaded soon) and I've been so busy ever since this is the first chance I've had to get some photos on the website. 

I hope you like them, it was great fun!


Cheltenham Connect Show

Cheltenham Connect is a highly successful local community initiative that was founded in 2009 and that has gone on to be one of the fastest growing and most active initiatives in Cheltenham. It was set up with the aim of strengthening and empowering the residential and trading community of South Cheltenham ( Leckhampton, Naunton Park, The Bath Road, The Suffolks, Tivoli and The Park). Anyone in Cheltenham can become a member, especially if you are interested in supporting the area.

Over the last few years, Mouse About Town has formed close connections with this organisation. I shot their 2012 village show, which was held in the Bath Road Market at the time, so I was thrilled to be invited along this year to document their 2014 show!

Bakers, makers and growers were all invited to come along and exhibit their talents, and maybe even win the 'best-in-show' award for their pumpkin, cake, jam or needlework! There were children's categories and a fancy dress parade too!  

It was a great afternoon with lots going on. I hope their next show will be as big a success.

Paws In The Park 2014

Last year Mouse About Town was invited along to cover Paws in the Park, a dog festival of enormous magnitude that takes place in Pittville Park, Cheltenham, once a year in August.

It was my usual documentary style of photography; capturing candid moments by simple observation. A few other factors play key parts too, of course, lighting and position being two elements that spring to mind instantly. 

It was a great morning. A fantastic variety of characters, and that was just the owners! Being a dog lover and owner myself, it never surprises me how often the dogs look like their owners. Some similarities were scarily uncanny! 

I hope you like the photos in this series. I hope to be back there again this year. Watch this space!

Montpellier Day

Last weekend, Mouse About Town popped down to Montpellier Day; a celebration of our talented local traders, who with their passion and craft, are what make the Montpellier District of Cheltenham so very special. 

Montpellier is a bustle of quirky, independent shops. From the cavernous vintage treasures in Pink Vintage to the cool and contemporary delights in Pod, there are home stores, children's clothes boutiques and fabulous kitchen houses. 

The Montpellier association are always putting on local events, so I hope to be involved this year in some of them.

Eastcombe Gnome Hunt

Each year, the picturesque village of Eastcombe, Gloucestershire, is invaded by gnomes as part of it's annual gnome hunt. It's a family event following a trail around the beautiful village and gardens to track down hidden gnomes.

This year I had the pleasure of going along to photograph it and I soon found myself distracted, peering under bushes and turning over stones! The event starts at Eastcombe Primary School, where there are stalls, refreshments and face painting in the playground, and finishes at The Lamb Inn for cream teas. There's even an ice cream parlour in one of the gardens, if you can find it!

The Eastcombe Gnome Hunt is an absolute must, I'll definitely be bringing my children along to it next year! 

Lechlade Duck Race

The Lechlade Duck Race is an annual charity event, held in Lechlade at The Riverside Wharf on the River Thames.

At the last minute, I was approached by the organisers and invited to come along. With two very young children in tow, (my husband was away working), I hiked the buggy and my camera equipment around and managed to get some lovely shots, which I hope portrait how much fun and how successful the event was. 

Sir Matthew Pinsent CBE launched the race at 1400 and 6000 local people cheered on the ducks until their finish line.

In addition to the main duck race, there were fun fair rides, inflatables, independent trading stalls, children's games, BBQ and ice-cream!

Local businesses could get involved by entering 'Duck Idol' and of course, not forgetting the fantastic 'Bob The Duck' mascot, who the kids adored!

It was a great day out for everyone, including myself and my children. I've been invited back to next year's event as their roaming photographer, hopefully my husband will be able to join us and we can enjoy a family day out in between all the photos I'll be taking! 

The Big Lunch @ The Junction

The Big Lunch is a very simple idea from the Eden Project. The aim is to get as many people as possible across the whole of the UK to have lunch with their neighbours annually on the first Sunday in June in a simple act of community, friendship and fun. Since starting in 2009, thousands of Big Lunches have taken place in all types of communities. 

This photographic coverage I took is from the big lunch that was held on our street, at the junction between Commercial Street and Gratton Street in Cheltenham. It was a terrific afternoon, spent with friends and neighbours. The children had the most fun I can ever remember - racing each other on scooters down the road, playing 'drivers' in Daddy's van, writing all over the pavements in chalk, eating huge wedges of cake. Just a total blast!

Suffolk's Street Fair

Mouse About Town's photography studio lies in the heart of The Suffolks; Cheltenham's boutique shopping quarter. So when they approached me about taking some photos of their street party, I was excited to be able to help them. 

The weather was fantastic and people flocked en mass to enjoy the market stalls, children's entertainment, street food, fun fair and of course all the shops, bars and cafes. 

If you haven't visited The Suffolks before then get yourself down there. There really is something for everyone; spas, vintage clothing agencies, independent female boutiques, reto and antique shops, cafes, delis, bars, gift shops. There are new shops are opening up all the time, a reflection of how quickly this small trading quarter is growing in popularity.

I hope to come along to more events at The Suffolks this year, so watch this space.