Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

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Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby Rob » Thu Sep 13, 2018 8:17 am

I have posted this as there are some concerns amongst owners that we could do a bit more to support the pub at our weekend meets.

For those who are not aware the deal we have always had with the pub is that we get the field for free, but we put some money behind the bar over the weekend by having breakfasts, evening meals, other meals, drinks etc.

Of late our support has not been great, we have gone from having over 20 for breakfasts on both Saturday and Sunday to just 5/6 on the Sunday of the September meet, and the evening meal numbers have also dwindled and is only well supported by those who camp, we cant expect the pub to accommodate us for 5/6 breakfasts at £5 a time as its not worth their while.

Its a difficult one to solve as most owners will want to just turn up enjoy the meet and go home again and never go in the pub which is fine and no one is suggesting that everyone has to have a breakfast as that would not work either and it has to be said that if some owners do not enjoy the breakfast or evening meal they will vote with their feet, and often the pub does itself no favours in that respect and now they insist on Saturday evening meal orders being in for around 6 gives little time after the meets to clean up and get back in the pub. They now have a karaoke on Saturday evenings which appears to be popular and why they want our Saturday evening meals done and dusted early and you cant really blame them for choosing a room full of people drinking at the karaoke to a handful of us sitting there for most of the evening.

In between the weekend Nano meets we also have a monthly social evening and again that was introduced to show the pub that they have our support outside the meets, but numbers are also very low on those evenings now down to just a handful at the last meet

It has been suggested in the past that we charge everyone who comes say £1 and pay that over, as during the course of a weekend we get 40/50 cars , but that idea didn't get much support at the time and once we start down that route we are committed to do it at every meet

Maybe its time for a new approach which is why I would ask you to post your thoughts and ideas on here, one thing is for sure the venue is critical to our meets and if we were to lose it, it would be very hard if not impossible to get one as good, which gives us exclusive use of a field which is just the right size, is in a central location and the owners do not mind us taking cars apart whilst we are there
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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby squire » Thu Sep 13, 2018 9:37 am

A difficult problem to resolve. I personally was not impressed with the breakfast which was £6.50 at the last Nano meet and I admit I only had it to increase the numbers if only by one but would not be inclined to have anymore. I can also see the pubs point of view about is it worth doing breakfast but as has been said those who camp may well appreciate it. I've also heard that the meals are not that good but have no knowledge of that personally, but again can understand the pub wanting the meals out of the way before evening entertainment starts.

People do have freedom of choice to use the pub over the weekend or not, although if people went and had a drink, coffee,tea, soft drink etc it might well help the situation a bit. I personally have no problem putting a £1 in the donations tin per visit and think most people would not mind either but it would be another thing to be managed and would dent the backup funds for the consumables that Nano crews pay for out of their own pocket which is the reason the donation tin was there for.

As a goodwill gesture to the pub I can only suggest, at the moment, that an amount of £ is offered to the pub for use of field/facilities and perhaps offset low numbers for breakfast over the weekend, again I would imagine most people that attend the Nano weekend would, I hope, understand as it would be tragic to lose the venue.
If we were to go down the route of £1 per visit and give the pub say £25/30 for the weekend it's money that they got for nothing and might give us a bit of bargaining power but I would suggest that the agreement is strictly between the Nano and the pubs landlord/tenant and not with the owners of the pub.

The more suggestions to resolve the problems the better but I think a "solution" needs to be in place for next year. Time for thinking caps on :lol:

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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby ARCTIC » Thu Sep 13, 2018 10:57 am

It is good that we now have a thread that can address the situation of supporting the FA, I think first we must have a sit down with Yvette and Kevin and ask them what they think, with us sometimes having a good attendance for breakfast and other times not is that really worth their while, if they said no, then we need to say would it be better if we just came to an agreement of renting the field off them and if so what price would it be, personally I doubt that £50/£60 would cut the mustard, it could well do but we would need to find out, at least then if owners wanted to have lunch they could or not.

I think that asking each car that entered the field to attend the meet for £1 would not cover it, because at some meets we have had low turn outs, this then would have to be made up from the contribution tin which in turn means that others are paying for those that may have not even contributed, we also would need a crew member to either go round and make sure each owner or car as paid, or someone would have to work the gate, that would need a volunteer crew member, therefore a minimum of £2 /£2.50 i think would be needed,in the big scheme of things is not bad, as we know that some owners have and always have come to the meet had jobs undertaking not by them selves but by crew or other owners and then left adding no contribution back albeit in the form of handing tools, making a coffee or tea, also you are going to get those that will park outside of the field hoping that they will still be able to get work carried out, we must make sure that this is not allowed.


As above which as been touched on the FA managers Yvette and Kevin also have a roll to play, they must see that the meals are up to a good decent standard, i asked at the last meet a few owners whom went up for a bit of lunch how the food was the feedback was not good at all, quoting that the burger was one of the worse they had ever had thin and cardboard type, not piping hot, the bun was not that soft, chips were a bit greasy and again not really hot as they should be, therefore it is a must do sit down with Yvette and Kevin either at the next social or before the 2019 season begins.
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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby squire » Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:26 pm

Hi Steve,
You mention some valid points in your post, but can see that the Ashes might say that nobody else, other than those that attend the Nano, have complained about the meals. Regarding paying for the field my figures where possibly a bit low, but we have no way on knowing if that money went in their back pocket and nothing changed, I sincerely hope I'm wrong on that, also it's easier to increase an offer, not easy to come down. Would an "entry" fee of £2-2.50 be a bit much and put off people that come for the social aspect from coming? I have reservations that the pub may not be bothered whether we were there or not, the field is just there doing nothing so if the pub got some income it would be a bonus to them, they would probably prefer money over the bar, but as you say they do have a role to play, if the food is not good other customers will not return and it could lead to square one with new landlord again.
It is indeed a difficult situation that I feel needs to be discussed between Nano people before going to the landlord. Would it be viable to ask people to sign in, name and vehicle registration near the field entrance on a trust basis after parking up and then to put the minimum donation (to be decided) in the donations tin or separate tin?
With a sign in it would be possible to ascertain the weekend and yearly total attendance.
Just a bit more food for thought :confused: .

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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby ARCTIC » Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:21 pm

squire wrote:Hi Steve,
You mention some valid points in your post, but can see that the Ashes might say that nobody else, other than those that attend the Nano, have complained about the meals. Regarding paying for the field my figures where possibly a bit low, but we have no way on knowing if that money went in their back pocket and nothing changed, I sincerely hope I'm wrong on that, also it's easier to increase an offer, not easy to come down. Would an "entry" fee of £2-2.50 be a bit much and put off people that come for the social aspect from coming? I have reservations that the pub may not be bothered whether we were there or not, the field is just there doing nothing so if the pub got some income it would be a bonus to them, they would probably prefer money over the bar, but as you say they do have a role to play, if the food is not good other customers will not return and it could lead to square one with new landlord again.
It is indeed a difficult situation that I feel needs to be discussed between Nano people before going to the landlord. Would it be viable to ask people to sign in, name and vehicle registration near the field entrance on a trust basis after parking up and then to put the minimum donation (to be decided) in the donations tin or separate tin?
With a sign in it would be possible to ascertain the weekend and yearly total attendance.
Just a bit more food for thought :confused: .

Martyn


Martyn.
Indeed so it is a difficult situation, hopefully we will resolve it, if there is in fact anything to resolve as of yet Yvette and Kevin have not approached any crew member me or Rob and made it clear they are not pleased, I think it may have been that on Sunday only 5 went for breakfast, also the price for breakfast was agreed that if under 15 it would be £6.50 15 & over £5.00.

Going back to 2010/11 Niffty Nigel was not that bothered how many had breakfast but back then we did have at least 25 on a lot of the occasions, but if on the Sunday there were only 8/10 he was ok with that also, and was not that much bothered if we ate on the Saturday night either as he used to have entertainment on as well, so wanted the last meal booking no later than 20.00pm.

I away it would most likely be better if we did have to pay for the field as that way we know where we stand, no breakfasts as people could either eat before they came or pop up the greasy café not far away, and have lunch if they wanted, not feel obliged that they should have to eat breakfast or lunch, same with the evening meal.

Asking people for their name and registration at the gate would once again need someone to man it through out the day, I doubt anyone is going to volunteer for that, also some owners may not like to give out their name etc I know they do at the T4 session but that is different, what ever way we decide to collect for the field if we have to, it as got to be managed by someone.

Those that come just to socialise for an hour or two can park on the car park and walk through the gate, as long as we keep an eye out that work is not being carried on away from the field ? again something that would need to be managed.

Hopefully we can get enough of us crew included at the next social night ( 18th September ) to have a good talk about it, at the same time ask Yvette and Kevin for their input, and go from there.
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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby sewerman » Thu Sep 13, 2018 8:09 pm

I think before we go trying to sort problems we may not have as Steve says a talk with the owners is required to see if there is in fact any issues.

Regarding the quality of the food , bearing in mind we need to keep then on our side, if peole don't complain to the owners about quality when it's put in front of them it puts us in a poor position to go to them and say it's an issue later.

The evening meal times are the pubs decision all we can do is explain why it's difficult for us to accommodate their times.

It might be worth going armed with next year's dates though to show were serious about coming.

And pessemistically will the owners still be there in March next year for our first meet?

Perhaps we could see if we could do a Christmas meal there with some decent attendance?

Just my thoughts so far

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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby Devilish » Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:04 pm

MO.
I would not drive to the FA for a free evening meal. After about a decade of crap, reluctantly, there is no chance of me contributing to the nano gratuity as a customer, even feeling like I should, enough is enough.
I attend the social meets (ok I forget the odd one), I have never drank alcohol, not a fan of even decent soft drinks, am diabetic, so I have to enjoy what I drink (80 -90%+ being my favourite cappuccino, but without my 2 sugars). A mug or glass of FA diet piss once too too often, was like the last straw on the camels back..

An agreed cash hand out being the primary gratuity, and no longer using the pub as a sort of obligation, more of a bonus, how long would it take for said bonus to sink to £0.

I reckon a £2 donation would be needed to hopefully keep the pub happy, nothing for a great weekend with free camping. Math is easy enough to work out the min - max the FA could expect, for doing no more than cut the grass prior to each nano.

There will be folk who have work done that could otherwise cost a tidy penny, and donate generously, people who forget to bring money (ahem), hard to believe someone would avoid paying, but hey ho. A nano donation box would be the trial, the future of the nano site depending upon it. Losing the nano site would turn the nano meets back to the way it began, private and invitational.

I am certain about how approaching the FA with issues or ideas will turn out. However diplomatic it is put it boils down to the same thing, food and drink is crap, always has been, and telling them how to run the FA will go down a treat.
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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby derek v » Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:35 am

I hope that I've not opened a can of worms with my comments about people not using the pub on the nano weekends.

But for me i say it as i see it. Breakfasts in the pub at £5.00 a time I think its good for what you pay and £1.50 for a coffee. Had better had worse trust me. Evening meals in there are great and I've never had a problem and if i did I would tell them when they come round to ask is everything ok with your meal.

I might be bias because this is my local pub and i do spend quite a bit in there on a weekend when im not away.
Right i was there Sunday morning and walked past the kitchen door just as the comment was made from one member of staff to another '' Only six for gods sake''
So as a person who loves camping and events for a weekend can i put my thoughts in. Charging £5.00 a car and £10.00 to camp is peanuts. You think that's to much ?? Last month I went to Stafford castle and paid just 3.00 to park and a few weeks before that 45.00 to camp at a show down south.

Getting back to the Four Ashes. Yes all they do is open the gate cut the grass and leave loo rolls in the loo job done.
As for us take your car to a garage. What do you pay in costs ?? £25.00 an hour minimum up to £95.00 at a dealer. So paying a fiver weather it to have help sorting your beloved 75 out or just being there for the social part of the day. Oh and a return the next day is included in the £5.00 by the way.

Now above are just my thoughts i'm no keyboard warrior.
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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby squire » Fri Sep 14, 2018 9:19 am

derek v wrote:I hope that I've not opened a can of worms with my comments about people not using the pub on the nano weekends.

But for me i say it as i see it. Breakfasts in the pub at £5.00 a time I think its good for what you pay and £1.50 for a coffee. Had better had worse trust me. Evening meals in there are great and I've never had a problem and if i did I would tell them when they come round to ask is everything ok with your meal.

I might be bias because this is my local pub and i do spend quite a bit in there on a weekend when im not away.
Right i was there Sunday morning and walked past the kitchen door just as the comment was made from one member of staff to another '' Only six for gods sake''
So as a person who loves camping and events for a weekend can i put my thoughts in. Charging £5.00 a car and £10.00 to camp is peanuts. You think that's to much ?? Last month I went to Stafford castle and paid just 3.00 to park and a few weeks before that 45.00 to camp at a show down south.

Getting back to the Four Ashes. Yes all they do is open the gate cut the grass and leave loo rolls in the loo job done.
As for us take your car to a garage. What do you pay in costs ?? £25.00 an hour minimum up to £95.00 at a dealer. So paying a fiver weather it to have help sorting your beloved 75 out or just being there for the social part of the day. Oh and a return the next day is included in the £5.00 by the way.

Now above are just my thoughts i'm no keyboard warrior.
Dek


Hi Derek,
Don't think you've opened a can of worms at all, the more opinions the better. The main problem seems to over the breakfasts, maybe with the small numbers that do stay over Fri and Sat night it might be best to just drop the idea and hope those that stay over understand the problem. I think the breakfast idea was for the benefit of both the pub and campers but it has not been working so well as of late. Obviously we are trying to do right by the pub and of course as cheaply and with the least amount of organisation required and withold the Nano ethos, however the main aim is to maintain the future of the Nano weekend.

Like you I'm no keyboard warrior and it's just my thoughts at the moment.

Martyn.
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Re: Supporting the Four Ashes - ideas please

Postby ARCTIC » Fri Sep 14, 2018 11:06 am

"derek v wrote:
I hope that I've not opened a can of worms with my comments about people not using the pub on the nano weekends.

But for me i say it as i see it. Breakfasts in the pub at £5.00 a time I think its good for what you pay and £1.50 for a coffee

Sunday morning and walked past the kitchen door just as the comment was made from one member of staff to another '' Only six for gods sake''



What I think we need to remind ourselves of also is that if Yvette and Kevin were not pleased surely they would have said something to either myself or Rob, as of yet they have not, but it still remains that 6 for breakfast is not worth their effort of opening up and getting staff in, once again it maybe be best at the next social to ask them how they feel the meets have worked out for them this season, do they think some things need to change, ie not do breakfasts, is it worth their time to do so, as we already know if less than 15 it is not really.

We could be reading into this to much ? I want to hear what Yvette and Kevin have to say, a £5.00 charge for a car will not work, as some do not come back on a Sunday, right at this moment we don't even know if a charge is going to be needed, I am sure by the end of Tuesday evening 18th we will know.
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