Report from Annual Dinner and Presentation Evening - 1st March 2008

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Nearly 60 people gathered together at the Longville Hotel near Much Wenlock to celebrate a great year for Mercia Fell Runners, everyone was in very good spirits and it transpired to be one of the most successful dinners of recent years.  Phil and Sue Blatch together with Kath Thompson helped Pauline to decorate the room in a yellow and black tribute to Club colours, and with balloons, flowers for the ladies, music and candles the scene was set for a splendid evening.   The meal was excellent with lots of vegetables (apparently this is a 'yardstick'!) and soon the room was full of noise and happy laughter,  There was the usual lighthearted quiz for  which the prize was 2 bottles of wine, won by Table 1 consisting of Viv and Matt Clewes, Jane and Russel Mapp, Tim Werrett, Jacqui Davies and Jamie Loxam, Tim Davies and Andrew Davies. They are obviously a brainy lot,  but I hope they gave a glass to Linda Davies (Mum of Tim, Andrew and Jacqui) who was on the next table and was doing her best to ignore all the cries of 'Mum, Mum???'.  After the lovely meal, Bob Dredge, Club Chairman gave an overview of the year, but not before being showered by party poppers and party cannons by the 'hooligan' element.  The Presentation part of the evening then followed and Bob awarded the following Club Trophies:     Club Champion - Tom Owens, Ladies Champion - Gill Harris, M40 - Matthew Clewes, L40 Yvette Lewis, M50 Dave Nichols, L50 Carol Dredge, M60 Grahame James.   Bob then introduced ex-chairman Nick Kingston who spoke a few words about the Mercia Achievement Award.  He explained that the Trophy was not awarded every year, but was kept until the Officers of the Committee felt that a certain outstanding acheivement deserved a special recognition, not always for the best racer or the biggest champion, but for something to be achieved that no-one else could have done on that day, he mentioned, in true 'Oscar' style the people who had excelled this year in their field, he talked of Pete Vale, Simon Bailey and Tim Werrett and of our Relays' Teams, of David Waides epic TMB, of Terry Davies/Joe Faulkners marvellous back-to-back 100 miler to celebrate the Longmynd Hike's 40th Anniversary, then he went on to talk about the eventual winners of the Award:  Andy Davies and Gill Harris, they were to be awarded the Trophy jointly for their efforts over the past few years in continuously breaking their own and other peoples records' for the Longmynd Hike. He stated they had both 'upped' their game time and time again to reachg their goals, the award was received well by the Dinner guests and it was a very 'Oscar' style presentation with trophies, flowers and flashbulbs popping, (see photo's on the Web). The evening then finished off with plenty of chatting as people left their tables and moved arounds the room to see old friends and new, a really good evening for a really good Club!  With special thanks to the Landlord and Landlady - Arthur and Jill Livingstone and staff at the Longville Hotel.