It is hard to think that the World Cycling Championships are all over but the preparation and planning has been worth it. In the run up to the event we had many meetings, lots of shopping lists to complete and lots of shopping to do.
Firstly, we want to thank each and every volunteer who came along over the nine days to help; far too many to name. We appealed for cooks, cleaners, cashiers, chatterers etc. There was always a lovely atmosphere with everyone happy to join in the fun.
We had hoped for three people in the kitchen, two in the hall, people to set up and to tidy up at the end of the day, for nine days! You can imagine the Rota took a great amount of organising, reorganising and lots of emails and phone calls – and we didn’t always get it right. The final result was a group of people on each ‘shift’ who did their absolute best to welcome all comers. The Rota included many people from across the Circuit. We drew on our experience of catering for the Tour de France. We appealed to the whole Circuit not only for helpers during the event but for home-made cakes too.
THANKS to all who kindly brought us their beautiful cakes and scones; so many we had to purchase a large chest freezer to store them in!! The Minister’s vestry began to look like a supermarket with the freezer, plates, napkins, cutlery, 90 toilet rolls, cleaning products, dozens of bread rolls, LOTS of bacon and sausage etc…
The event began on the Saturday 21 September with the paracycling races. Our first visitors began arriving and enjoying the bacon and sausage butties, together with filter coffee and tea etc. A table was laden with homemade cakes, scones and biscuits, all of which quickly disappeared – along with compliments to the cooks! Children enjoyed riding the smoothie making bicycle outside and visitors to Harrogate and UCI Marshalls enjoyed their refreshments in the sunshine.
We had one or two unusual requests, apart from the usual decaff and gluten free requests. Did we have peppermint tea, hot chocolate, vegetarian options, could we charge a phone? As the week went on, word had got out that Trinity and Harlow Hill were the places to be and the visitors kept coming. There were several dog visitors to the church hall enjoying the left-over crumbs on the floor. It was especially fun watching the toddlers trying to decide which cake/bun they wanted out of the many options. Ben had organised a short service every day, which was appreciated by those who were able to take part. We want to say thank you to all the clergy who helped with this, and their support throughout the Event. Special mention had to be made of the final day when the weather could not have been worse and the hall floor began to resemble a lake.
We were not only deluged with rain, but deluged with people coming in the watch the race on two TV screens and the big screen in the church. The hall, church downstairs and upstairs were all full. We had perfected a system of numbering each order but with so many orders coming in people had to find a seat first and our wonderful waiters and waitresses could be heard calling out ‘23 – bacon with ketchup’ as they moved around the building. We ran out of plates, cups and napkins, and NEARLY cakes.
When the race came to its climax with the Danish rider crossing the winning line the whole church population cheered and clapped. It was a wonderful moment. It has been a joy to welcome so many people, literally from all over the world – Australia, Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Holland, Ireland, Wales and many more countries.
We have received many comments and thank you messages on our website, besides the thanks from people as they left Trinity every day. It has been really been heart-warming and made all the work all worth-while. The whole event was person based and centred and it was just joyous to be present and to participate – serving others in Trinity and doing God’s work.
THANK YOU and your parishioners so much for the excellent service, teas and coffees you provided on Sunday. My family were really grateful that your church was open and so welcoming. All the people working, from the lady on the door to the people in the kitchen, were so friendly and helpful and it really enhanced a great day, despite the awful weather. Please pass on our thanks to all concerned.
Regards, The Roth family
PS thanks also to the person who had to mop the floor !