Annual printers’ celebration sees Windles triumph over Woodmansterne
Martinis and beer, Coke and 99s, bangers and burgers, sports and sunbathing – the annual printers’ wayzgoose for Windles and Woodmansterne was celebrated in fine style thanks to the glorious September sunshine.
With Windles Group founder and md Bruce Podmore and his operations manager son Miles on barbecue duties at their Thame hq, Woodmansterne brought staff from both its Watford and Milton Keynes sites to join in the fun and games on Friday, 8 September.
Marking the traditional end of summer, and the start of working by candlelight, wayzgoose festivities go back to medieval times and are celebrated by printers around St Bartholomew’s Day with Woodies’ md Seth Woodmansterne responsible for reviving the event five years ago as a chance for the two businesses to socialise and indulge in their friendly rivalries which, this time round, took in five-a-side football, table tennis, tractor tyre race, tug-o-war, and nearest-the-pin golf challenge.
It’s the third time Windles has hosted the event, and known inventor and engineer Bruce opened proceedings by announcing: “I have built four swimming pools for previous events – every time I build a swimming pool, we end up with it raining, and, to the maximum degree, we’ve had hailstones the size of golf balls! This year I don’t build a swimming pool and we get this glorious sunshine, go figure.
“Seth sent me a text last night ‘you’re gonna lose’. I’m thinking that’s aggressive – we’re here for some beer. We’re here for some barbecue. We welcome you, and thank you for sharing what we do here in the greetings card industry. So let the games begin.”
While Bruce explained that the current cost-of-living crisis meant partying on a slimmer scale than in previous years, there was still plenty of food and drink to go round, as he and Miles kept cool flipping burgers and sausages in the 30-degree heat with plenty of ice in their martinis, while beer, prosecco, water and soft drinks were enjoyed by all – along with visit from a Mr Whippy ice-cream van whose 99s slipped down a treat!
And Seth stepped up with gifts for Windles’ Casey Wallington and Paula Smith who were responsible for organising the wayzgoose.
Home ground advantage won out with Windles taking the title in the football – helped by PG’s Warren Lomax making some stunning saves as goalie – table tennis and tyre race, while Woodies triumphed at tug-of-war, and Wickies – as the publisher’s MK team is known – was tops at golf.
But there were only three cheers for the winners, with no trophy to present as Wickies, having fittingly held on to it for the second time running last year at the official opening of the Magna Park site, “accidentally” forgot to put the silverware on the coach to bring to this year’s championship!