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Bedford Militaria Fair (UK)

Article about: No pictures - sorry. This is one of the longest running UK Militaria Fairs - it was the first one I went to nearly 40 years ago and since then it's moved location 3 times (once actually OUT

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    Default Bedford Militaria Fair (UK)

    No pictures - sorry.

    This is one of the longest running UK Militaria Fairs - it was the first one I went to nearly 40 years ago and since then it's moved location 3 times (once actually OUT of Bedford but it was always referred to as the Bedford Fair???). It is now back in what I think is it's best location...a cavernous Sports Hall, with loads of (free) parking. It's been held there previously but had to move when plans emerged of a forthcoming demolition...it relocated to the nearby city of Milton Keynes where, sadly, it got smaller and smaller. But they didn't knock the ol' place down and the Fair went home last year...and since then I think there's been 3 at the "new place". Sadly the old guard of dealers either stopped attending or just "stopped" as this once bustling multi-alley-tabled gig is a collection of WELL spaced out tables (all good stuff though) and I'm hoping...REALLY hoping the old guys come back (or their sons do!) and make this the event what it used to be.

    It's gotta be one of the best venues...spacious, light, dry and warm (that may not sound so luxurious to our US friends but believe me..."dry and warm" IS luxurious over here (next weekends show is held in Cow sheds....literally!). It's got good road links (now!) as I found out yesterday AND theyve ditched their long-held policy of no-one allowed in till 10.00 (this used to be because "the dealers like their time"....aaaaahhhh.....poor old dealers..having to sit down and take money...whilst the SPENDING public were made to queue OUTSIDE in the rain for hours..with no food concessions, coffee etc ..no Premium-priced Early Entry option......but that's all changed now.....it's 9.30 now! [someone give me a Woo Hoo!!] )....anyway, this old classic deserves better now...it's evolved....it appears to have attached some importance to the queueing public (a boiled sweet never did make it any better) and I hope it remains and grows.

    And finally, a note re early-access, dealers, costs and consideration.......collectors often arrive early (albeit because they refuse to appreciate that all the best stuff changed hands when the dealers were unpacking their cars in the car park!)....they have families...most have only 2 days a week to spend with their families yet they've chosen to sacrifice some of that time to walk amongst fat old men selling dirty/rusty stuff...most don't seem to care if the last box of books hasn't been put out or the tablecloths are crooked...they wanna get in...get round...buy stuff..and get out. If dealers are ready - great....if they're not, then we'll go round again (but possibly buy elsewhere) and come round again, enjoying the freedom from the massed "Walkers" who will wait...then wander around asking if EVERYTHING is genuine....thinking everything will be $20....and with NO INTENTION of buying stuff at all.......AND collectors will often pay a premium for this early-access luxury...quite a large premium too...and like it's the Dealers choice whether they should give up their time to make money its the "public" choice as to whether they'll spend it...but what do we know...I'm simply a guy who wants to give money to other guys who "like their time". Now I should make it VERY clear that I appreciate the Dealer community.... this may sound anti-Dealer - that is not the intention. I'm immensely grateful to anyone who sources the stuff we need ("desire" is probably a better word)....and some of them aren't fat either :-) but Fair organisers have got to think about their public...standing outside, wallets bulging, simply wanting to get in..AND they'll often pay-up to do so........

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