We had a garden makeover last year, and on 16th August it was the site for our "Summer Garden Party" to celebrate Chesterton House's 30th Anniversary. The evening was all about giving something back to the wonderful clients we have gained over the years, and John Bolton, Marketing Executive, has the story of how it all unfolded.
First of all, before anything is said about the event itself, we would like to acknowledge some of the lovely feedback we have had from our clients. Hearing your kind words and enthusiasm towards the event made the months of planning all worthwhile!
As soon as the Marketing team arrived into the office, our first thought was to check the weather forecast for what seemed like the billionth time. All of our fingers and toes were crossed that we would be given just one more day of beautiful weather this year.
It was like something out of a comedy sketch, because as soon as we loaded up the forecast, it started to rain. Bucketfuls. We had a wet weather plan ready, however no one really wants to go to a garden party when an uninvited, disruptive gatecrasher such as poor weather attends.
Luckily, once we had finished panicking, we looked back at the forecast and saw a small, yellow object appearing from behind some clouds (⛅) from 11am to 5pm, then 🌞 from 6pm onwards. Cue a small celebration, before quickly uncrossing the fingers and toes and beginning preparation for the evening.
Kelly Baldry, our dedicated and hardworking gardener, completed his last minute trim of the wonderfully green grass, then a flurry of bunting, fairy lights, table cloths, signs and flowers descended onto Chesterton House's hidden garden.
While we were completing the finishing touches to the party, RGCS Caterers and Arioso String Quartet arrived and began setting up. Before we knew it the smell of fried onions wafted through the air, the musicians were tuning their instruments, drinks were put on ice, wine glasses were polished and the staff were all congregating in the reception area for the briefing.
Suddenly there was an air of expectancy, as the evening we had prepared for finally got underway. The string quartet struck their first note, RGCS put the burgers on the grill, drinks were poured and the party began!
One benefit of holding our garden party in-house was that we could show our clients the buildings we all work in. Some of our staff kindly volunteered to become our resident tour guides for the evening, and could be seen doing some last minute brushing up on their knowledge before the tours commenced at 6:30pm.
Clients were taken around all the buildings while being told more about the rich, fascinating history within these walls, such as how:
Chesterton House is one of Loughborough’s finest examples of Georgian architecture, but it is most famous as a milestone in the history of English education, being the site of England’s first grammar school for girls from 1850.
Meanwhile in the garden, clients and staff were finally able to put some names to faces. Some of you may have been clients here for a long time and had already built relationships with members of the team, so formal introductions weren't necessary. For others it was a way of getting to know our planners, para-planners, administrators, accountants and solicitors in a more relaxed environment (a glass of wine and a burger in a garden).
As the night progressed, the sun began to set and left a beautiful, golden glow on All Saints Church, then the fairy lights came on to illuminate the garden as the Arioso String Quartet played their final cadence. Before long it was time to say our farewells, although in our opinion the night went far too quickly.
Now all that remained was the small task of cleaning and washing up. Oh, what a night!
Once again we would like to thank our clients for coming to our party, we really enjoyed showing you around our premises and getting to know you better. Also thanks to our team that helped on the night, RGCS Caterers and Arioso String Quartet for helping make the night as special as it was.
For those that were there, and those that couldn't make it this time, take a look at our Summer Garden Party Video to see how the evening unfolded.