On Sunday 7th May, with the Coronation Shelter renovated, the pond railings painted, flower beds planted, and village signs adorned with Union Jack flags, Graveley Village celebrated the King’s coronation bathed in glorious sunshine, kicking off with a fun dog show on Pond’s Field organised by Mrs Sam Ward and judged by Mr Howard Johnson & Mr Rob Gordon at.  The event was well supported with a wide range of hounds from working collies to a fabulous Bijon Frise. The category winners were; Waggiest Tail 1st Tilly – Springer Spaniel Puppy, 2nd Lolly – Wire Haired Dachshund, 3rd Diesel – Spaniel. Longest Legs 1st Albert- Greyhound, 2ndSrana- Black Labrador, 3rd Bala- Border Collie, Shortest Legs 1st Bongo- Smooth Haired Dachshund, 2nd Lolly– Wire Haired Dachshund, 3rd Oliver – Bijon Frise. Prettiest/Most Handsome 1st Bala – Border Collie, 2nd Tilly- Springer Spaniel Puppy, 3rd Diesel- Spaniel. Best Fancy Dress 1st Coco – Cool Britannia , 2nd Bongo- George & The Dragon, 3rd Pippa – Wedding Dress.  The overall title of ‘King’s Favourite’ was won by Pippa, a Black Labrador.  Thanks to all those who took part, especially the many children who stood patiently throughout, to Mr & Mrs Moore who kindly lent their field for the show, to Mrs Sam Ward who worked her magic with medals, customised rosettes, and certificates and to Mr Danny Bennet who organised a backdrop of classic cars.

Meanwhile in strict secrecy, three judges undertook the ‘difficult’ job of blind judging Graveley’s Coronation Cake Competition held in our beautifully decorated Village Hall. Resident bakers excelled themselves, with Adult & Junior category tables both heaving with delicious offerings.  The Junior results were 1st Aurora Ross, 2nd Emily Leitch and 3rd Sophia Ward.  Ms Katrina Oates came 1st in the Adult category, with Mrs Amy Matthews 2nd and Mrs Katie Biss 3rd.  After the judging, the hall was opened to the public for free cake & refreshments.  Not a crumb was left at the end of the day.  Our thanks to Mrs Susie Gordon, Mrs Sue More and Mrs Lynette Abbott for their organisation, to our judges, Mrs Chris Eayrs, Mrs Rena Chapman and Mrs Nikki Bentley, to Mrs Sam Ward for providing Rosettes & Certificates, to our volunteers who served refreshments throughout the afternoon and, to our bakers for their splendid contributions for the day.

In the afternoon, the celebrations moved to Mr & Mrs Moore’s field at Manor Syde which volunteers had set up with marquees, picnic tables, children’s games, and enough bunting to reach the moon!  Villagers sat down to their picnics and from 3pm were roused by Mrs Poppy Walker and Mr David Henderson to participate in sporting events. Everyone who took place in the obstacle course, dress-up race and cross-country ski races were great sports.  Awards for Best Skiers went to Faith Munday and Manni and for Sporting Participation, to Emily Leitch & Jago Bentley.

At 4pm the inter-village Tug of War was waged with the ladies of the village sadly defeated by Yelling, who press—ganged a few ladies from the opposing side to even up the number.  Graveley Men’s Tug of war team fared better, clearly in great shape from lifting countless pints at the Three Horseshoes pub, they won two of three pulls against a sporting Yelling. A thrilling spectacle for the ladies, with each team fielding nineteen athletes.  Graveley anticipate their undefeated reign against Yelling, will last for many years to come

Following the prize giving, we were treated to a delicious BBQ from the Three Horseshoes outdoor catering team, enjoyed to a background of toe-tapping tunes courtesy of our DJs, Mr Danny Bennet & Mr Peter Munday.  As one villager remarked, she’d had ‘a fabulous day, fit for a king!’   Thank you to all those who attended, the organising committee, the many volunteers and to Graveley Parish Council for funding what proved to be a fantastic community event.