Fun at Park
The sixth Tolkien Weekend took place at Sarehole Mill on 14 to 15 May 2005.
The Tolkien Society table in the courtyard.
The Tolkien Weekend has become more popular year on year. This year there
were more stalls on the main field, there was more to do and more to see.
In previous years, there had tended to be an empty
area towards the end of the field, with the amateur radio demonstration left
somewhat in lonely splendour.
This time there were more attractions using all the available space, with a farmers market also
at the far end of the field. Both the sausages and the cheese were excellent!
A number of visitors commented favourably on the proposal for a Tolkien
The event is now so large and varied that it is not possible to
experience everything in two days. Attractions included:
- The mill itself
- The Tolkien Society archives exhibition
- Guided tours
- The Tolkien Tent
- Games Workshop
- Isengard Smial
- Sindarin lessons
- Proposals for a Tolkien Centre
- Book sales and many other stands
- Farmers Market
- Wythall Amateur Radio Club
- A model railway that people could ride on
- A gypsy caravan
- Woodland craft demonstrations
- Re-enactment societies
- Two craft tents
- A poetry tent
- A local Ranger service exhibit
- Activities for small children.
- Hot sausage rolls, veggy burgers and ice cream vans.
There were many guided tours and walks:
- In the footsteps of Tolkien
- A walk along the River Cole to the Dingles with Peter Bennett.
- Wildlife walk
- Along the River Cole with Stefan Bodnar
- Mosely Bog
- A walk led by John Craig Wood, Local Nature Reserves Officer.
- Mosely School
- A walk led by Rod Ling. Hilary Tolkien trained here as a cadet for the "Pals".
- Tolkien's childhood haunts
- A walk led by Bob Blackham
- Mosely Bog
- An archeology walk with City Archaologist Mike Hodder
The Tolkien Tent
Sindarin lessons were popular.
was gving lessons in Sindarin, as in previous years. Lesson titles included:
- How are you?
- Where is it?
- How to date an elf.
Unfortunately there were no elves present at the end of the day for people to practice on ...
The lessons proved very popular, though. Any elves reading this can rest assured of being addressed
politely by Zainab's students.
Games workshop had two tables, popular with younger visitors.
Videos showing places thought to have influenced Tolkien.
Isengard Smial, the Birmingham local group of The Tolkien Society.
Audio tours of places thought to have influenced Tolkien.
Books were also on offer.
Other areas, a miscellaneous sample
Live herbs and locally produced wine were on sale in one of the
The society of model engineers were conducting rides on their mini steam
People had a chance to try their hand at wood carving.
As in previous years, an introduction to archery was on offer. This was
extremely popular, with queues of almost an hour throughout
the weekend and the instructors and arrow-gatherers working flat out. Our
roving reporters made it to the front of the queue for the first time ever
and were so impressed they are thinking of taking it up. (No pictures, though.
Too busy shooting!)
People were shooting at conventional targets or at a model of Smaug. One of the targets
was partly obscured by a model spider, not as large as
Shelob, but large enough to add to the challenge.