Going, going . . . . chairman raises cash with surprise auction of squashes

An impromptu fund-raising seasonal auction was held at the last church on the Society’s final summer tour.

Stuart Bowell, chairman, decided to seek bids for two giant squashes – and managed to raise £10 for the Society, on Saturday, September 2.

In a slightly confusing start to the auction, initially he invited bids in pre-decimal amounts – a tanner (2.5p), a shilling (5p) and a florin (10p). Fortunately, no-one actually bid half-a-crown (12.5p) or half a dollar. As the lively bidding proceeded, he took bids in pence, and then pounds.

Standing in the nave of St Michael and All Angels, Geldeston, Mr Bowell then managed to secure bids in current currency. The first lot, weighing almost 7lbs (3.1kg) was knocked down for £3 – and the successful bidder handed over a £5 note. The second large green squash, weighing 6lb, was sold to the Round Tower’s editor, Michael Pollitt for £4.

Here, the chairman, Stuart holds one of the lots high while Richard Barham, one of the Society’s guides, holds the other.

There was a near-record turnout of almost 60 members and guests for the tour of the three churches, starting at St Michael, Stockton, then heading to All Saints, Kirby Cane before tea was taken at Geldeston. Thanks to the loyal band of helpers, who served tea and cakes for the visitors.