Show attendance

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Mark Baker

Friday, July 9, 2010

I forgot to mention earlier this week the Festival of the Tree event held at Westonbirt Arboretum, will once again be taking place this week on 27-30 August. Sculptree, sees people creating wonderful chainsaw carvings, and this event is held 23-30 August

It is a wonderful event hosted in a wonderful setting and there is so much to see for all the family.

I, like many, have noted the decline of some shows and whilst we have bastions of excellence with some, people are not necessarily engaging with them in the same ways as they may have done in years past. I am referring to all woodworking shows with this comment, but is it that the habits of people have changed in the way we buy things, or are there less people in general doing woodworking as a hobby? Some of my friends only do it as they need to around the house, other than that they would rather buy in services – money of course is a factor in this – so is this a factor? Some of my friends also comment that why should they make something when they can go to places like Ikea and buy made items cheaper than they can buy the wood for.

Is it an issue of time? Many struggle with juggling time and often getting to shows involves travelling too – so there is travel, cost and time to consider. I asked similar questions a while back and travel, cost and a show not being near to where people live are major factors. But, apart form one or two shows, many still take place in the same locations as they have always been, and they were well attended then and that also involved travel, time and money.

I genuinely don"t know why people are not attending shows in the numbers they once did. There just seems to have been this gradual shift over time where the numbers have declined. No one has much data available to tell us how many woodworkers there are in the country. Certainly we know buying habits of tools have changed and also the way we shop, but as to whether our numbers are diminishing, it is anyone"s guess. What do you think? Are there more or less woodworkers now? If the numbers are declining, how is this likely to impact on us over the coming years?

Have a great weekend and we will catch up some more next week.

Mark

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