I first became involved with BSSK events as a visitor to the shows many years ago. My local show was Grimsby and as the date of the show approached, I visited the BSSK website to see which day I wanted to go to the event after checking out the list of talks on the website.
I noticed on the website that BSSK were looking for volunteers to help out at the shows and if interested, send an email giving a little bit of information about myself.
So I submitted an email, which was the Wednesday before the show and I received a reply from Angie asking if I could meet her on the Saturday morning about 9.30am. Little did I realise that from that it would lead to me working very closely with Angie for many years to come. That was back in 2007 and the rest is as they say "history".
In around 2010 my husband Martin started to help out at some of the local shows with set up, loading and unloading, electrics and all the other physical jobs associated with setting up and breaking down. We both enjoyed our "working weekends away" and we were delighted that we shared the BSSK experience together.
In May 2014 I was made redundant from my full time "day job" just at the same time as Angie had sent a request out to the universe to ask for some help herself, she was working 16-18 hours a day regularly to try and keep on top of everything.
At first I offered to help Angie out in the office a couple of days a week while I was looking for another job, but I enjoyed working in the office so much, I didn't really want to find another job and just wanted to keep on working with Angie. I was learning so much and enjoying it that I increased my hours to three days a week in addition to the weekend events.
We soon got into a way of working with each other that made life easier for Angie and more interesting for me. For the first time in years Angie had started to get some of her evenings and weekends back, as the extra help in the office meant that she could finish work at a reasonable hour and not panic that things weren't getting done, or feel guilty that she was taking some time off.
On the whole, everything seemed to be working well, until Angie became ill in March, she was rushed to hospital a couple of days after the Elsecar show, with chest pains and difficulties breathing. After spending 5 days in hospital she was allowed home to rest for a couple of weeks, she had a diagnosis of angina and a whole load of tablets to take every day to help manage her condition.
This huge change required Angie to re-think her future at the helm of BSSK, given that she could no longer push herself as much as she had in the past. We tried dropping down to attending weekend only events, with Martin and myself managing the one day events. But even this was proving to be difficult as following on from Chester, Angie was struggling to get back on her feet.
So after much thought and soul searching, Angie decided that it was time to call it a day! Angie did not want everything to come to an end completely as she had spent so many years building up the shows. We discussed how it could move forward, but due to financial difficulties, it could not continue as BSSK. We then came to the decision to re-launch the shows under the new name of Moonlit Pathways. Although BSSK has provided the foundations for this I hope to continue to improve and extend the life of the shows for many more years to come.
I hope you will all continue to support the events, and I look forward to working with you all.