Summer is, of course, a busy time of year at the Tower, but then, on reflection, when isn’t it busy? As the school holidays begin, the glamping site moves up a gear as we change from being full up at weekends, to have turn-arounds on Fridays and Monday. Christine and Mya, who look after the site, are rushing around at top speed, making beds, cleaning ashes from the wood burning stoves, filling up the log containers, checking on who wants a hot tub and who wants their own chicken coop. The Red Arrows have nothing on the swift changes on our glamping site!
School holidays, of course mean no more school day trips until September, but the bookings still keep coming in, teachers, who hadn’t had time to fill in their booking forms at the end of term, send them off at their leisure in the holidays. New booking requests also come in during the holidays.
Weddings of course are very busy. We seem to have had a lot from all round the world recently, as I type the canapes circulating around the wedding guests have a distinctive Spanish flavour, the groom is Spanish, his bride, English. Last week we had a couple who live in Switzerland, he is English, she is Russian, so we had to have a Russian translator to allow then Russian guests to understand what was being said during the ceremony. Every wedding is so wonderfully different and personal to the couple, a full sized fairground carousel was a first last weekend, that livened up the office as the horses galloped round and round outside the office window! Owls fly in to deliver a wedding ring, we worry about the tempting beams, high up in our ceremony room, will the owl forget the ring and roost high up, leaving the couple ringless and the Registrars searching for ring replacements….it hasn’t happened yet! it’s lovely to have a harpist playing in the garden outside the office, very soothing! Or a three piece band (fun) We enjoy Harry Potter themed weddings and marvel at the wonderful wedding cakes. Garden games are popular, from coconut shies to hook the duck, we have them all. The imagination of our brides and grooms is fantastic, we love to see what they have decided for their wedding. Sometimes we have the Singing Waiter Masters, a company who dress as our catering staff, but burst into song half way through serving. That amazes the guests. We often have magicians to astound and entertain the guests, as well as all types of photo-booth opportunities, resulting in hilarious pictures of everyone.
Then amongst all this activity the general visitor must not be forgotten. We are open to them, Sunday to Thursday 11.00 – 5.00 at this time of year, so the Tea Room is busy, the gift shop well stocked, children rushing about solving the Dolls’ House Quiz, parents checking out the East Anglian artists in the Batte Lay Foundation exhibition and everyone marvelling at the Crowns and Crests of past Garter Knights, 40 of which are on show at the Tower, brightly painted and quirky, fun to see.