Dear Members and Friends,

Congratulations again to our team who have run another very successful event. We would not be running the event without the dedication of Jill Ridgeway and Angela Cannell who took on the lions share of the pre event organizing.

Following is an excerpt from the media release for your enjoyment.

The 23rd SteamFest was held the long weekend in March at the Sheffield Steam and Heritage Centre, and it came together well with the opening by the Premier and the launch of the new Miniature Railway. Mr Hodgman praised the efforts of the Society on the wonderful event as he opened SteamFest and donned a volunteer t-shirt. He also officially opened the Sheffield Miniature Railway and rode the train around the 400 metre track.

Over 15 working steam engines were demonstrated last weekend as well as the Krauss train and the Miniature Railway. Crowds were a little down on 2016 and 2015 primarily due to the wet weather across the state (except at Sheffield) on the Sunday, but those who came enjoyed the many exhibits and stalls spread over the nine-hectare site. It was a family focused day with many free activities for the children including a new petting farm and pony rides. The many Steam Exhibits, the Light Horse, Tractor Pulling, Bullocks and Grand Parade continue to be crowd favourites.

“We rely on our volunteers and this year they again rose to the challenge of such a huge event” said Mr Martin. “We aim to preserve our steam era heritage and to bring a love of steam to the next generation.”

This month our Krauss loco will be running on 22nd and 23rd April when Taste of The North West is on in Sheffield.

Mrs Leoni Read drew Survey Competition winners – first place by Mr Sean Burtt, with four second prize winners.

Winners of the Photo competition will be announced on 22nd April – entries close on 15th April. Winning photos will be in the May edition of the Kentish Voice.

This year many motor home tourists assisted us with the event. We offered that they would get their entry to the event reimbursed if they worked for 4 hours. Only 4 motor homers claimed their reimbursement from memory – the rest choosing to donate their entry as they enjoyed the weekend so much.
Chris Martin