Take 5 with the team

HODs HQ is in full prep mode for going on tour! Our regional events for organisers kick off next week so we’re spinning LOTS of plates this month. Before we set off though, time to put the kettle on and take stock for your monthly behind the scenes bulletin – so pull up a chair and open that biscuit tin!

1. Preparing to hit the road (well, the rails!)

On Tuesday we’ll be boarding the first of, ooh 10+, trains to take us on tour for the regional Organiser workshops. Always a highlight of the year for me (despite the spinning plate dizziness of tasks to coordinate them!) nothing beats spending time with our local organisers, sharing ideas, experiences and inspiration. We start in Leicester and will end up in Gloucester – there’s still time and space to book for that one, so if you live westwards at all, please do come join us! 

Here's hoping our travels are as fun as this, though perhaps more comfortable?! / © ChrisLacey

2. Welcome to the team

As things hots up with registration well and truly underway, we welcomed our new volunteers to the team. Catherine and Eleri will be helping Alex and I with all the essential festival registration and looking for highlights to write about. Whilst Chloe and Darcy will be working with Andy on feeding our social media streams, spreading the word about all the fab things happening. Working with them is another highlight of the job for me as they each bring a fresh perspective, and always teach me as much as we help them!

3. Party planning (cue music!)

We may have mentioned before that this is our silver anniversary year, and we’re just a tad excited about it! So of course we’ve been beavering away on plans to spread the joy and the word – including some special parties, a book, and an exhibition – watch this space, I’ll give you more details as soon as I can.

4. Still building castles (BREAKING NEWS!)

So last month I told you about our 3D castle on display in Swindon, well, this month we’ve been working on a smaller scale version but one that’s got us extra excited. Now this is proper breaking news for you, we’re planning a new children’s activity sheet for local organisers to use over the festival, not just any sheet though, but a special version of our ‘build your own castle’ shape! It is the genius idea of Alex and we’ve just sent the brief off to our designer, fingers crossed they’ll be ready in June.

5. Soothing stitching session

Sneak peek - my craftivism cloud underway!

After all that excitement it was lovely to have an hour this week where we got to sit round a table as a team and chat about our dreams whilst listening to birdsong and stitching clouds.Ok, I can see your raised eyebrows from here - now what on earth was that all about?! Well, we were being shown what a craftivism workshop is like.As part of our People Power theme we’re working with craftivist, Sarah Corbett, for our Unsung Stories project. Again this is a bit of a sneak peek – come back next week and you’ll see the first set of details including a chat with Sarah C (yes, very confusing working with 2 Sarahs, especially on phone conferences!). Bear with us though, and get ready, this year we’re encouraging you all to ‘Dare to Dream’!

That’s all for this month, see you next time!