The Winter Fair

21 Oct

As always the Winter Fair causes our office additional work as producers expect us to be able to answer their questions relating to this event. One producer, who is always on the ball, pointed out that he understood Fernleigh Design were certainly not the cheapest in supplying shell schemes and was this the reason the Food Hall stands prices are always so expensive? I’ve no idea whatsoever about the likely costings of shell schemes, so this could be totally untrue, but I was happy to follow through on his behalf. It is though confusing that we’ve heard from one source that wag are not running the Winter Fair Food Hall this year but from another source that they were. Thankfully it’s not just me that ends up confused and very dizzy from going around yet again in ever decreasing circles.

So this as far as I’ve got:

A Welsh Government spokesperson said:

“RWAS have managed this year’s contract with Fernleigh directly so it is not a Welsh Government contract.

“All Welsh Government contracts for exhibition and trade development support are  contracted through formal procurement frameworks which are advertised openly via Sell2Wales and the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) and  are renewed periodically. We will shortly advertise through these channels to renew the framework contracts for a new 3 year period.

“We are not yet in a position to comment on food festival funding in 2014.”

I thought that Fernleigh were under a 3 year contract with wag food to run the Winter Fair and the RWAS, but seemingly that cannot be the case as according to this statement RWAS have got this year’s contract, but it’s puzzling that I’ve been told wag food are running the Food Hall at the Winter Fair, how can that be? So I’m told shortly there will be a new tender up for grabs, but what does ‘shortly’ mean? Don’t bother giving me a clue.

As for wag food ‘not yet in a position to comment on food festival funding in 2014’ – when will they know? Well I’ll tell you what, I’ll go back yet again, because I have nothing more worthwhile to do today than chase wag, and I’ll ask for a timeline. Do you think wag will expect me to keep asking the same question………………………………


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  1. Mr M.

    October 22, 2013 at 11:12 am

    This showground is too expensive for me to attend.
    I am not sure how these stands fees are arrived at. Can wag explain?
    You to take lot of money to even cover your stand costs, it can be a struggle with this high initial cost.

  2. trader 3

    October 23, 2013 at 11:09 am

    Winter Fair expensive, over rated with too many selling restrictions. With cheaper stands outside the food hall it then loses what it should be which is a showcase of artisan Welsh foods. Not just big companies with their Head Offices outside Wales and a mini base in Wales so they can take full advantage of our Welsh grants.
    It’s not right that this practice is allowed to continue but wag allows it and even encourages it.
    So much for being a small trader in Wales we are treated like 2nd class people

  3. producer

    October 24, 2013 at 11:36 am

    I’m beginning to hate this site in that I’m getting addicted to it and spend far too much time on it!
    The food hall at the Royal and the Winter Fair always did it’s own thing. I don’t think it shows off our artisan producers and the stands prices are way too high for many of us.

  4. producer 2

    October 24, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    This Food Hall should be purely to showcase Welsh producers that have their business in Wales not a token gesture green house to qualify for Welsh grants.
    Wag food know this has always gone but instead of stopping it they dish out more grants to companies bending the rules.
    A shake up should have been done years ago.
    Too many producers cannot afford the high prices for the food hall and a breakdown of the costs of the food hall would be an eye opener for us micro traders.

  5. Jaybee

    October 25, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    It’s time wag sat down with RWAS and sorted out this farce of a food hall. It’s time the priority was to concentrate on Welsh producers of all sizes, not just those with a token base in Wales. Micro producers cannot afford these high prices, but many of us are worthy as artisan producers to be there and showcase our wares and make some useful contacts.