It has been incredibly hard year for us & as you can imagine, the events industry has been hit super-hard (& I feel we have been slightly forgotten too, as well as all the businesses that rely on the events industry for their income) There have been many times in the last 18 months that I have felt really unsure about the future of the show & whether it will ever happen again. It was so hard to have to cancel a show & then planning another, only for that to be cancelled too, but what I am so thankful of is the support our lovely exhibitors have shown us. We really wouldn’t have made it through without you & your support & encouraging words. I feel so lucky to have a job where I work with such a fantastic group of people & I am now so excited to see you all again at Kensington.
Times have certainly changed & the show will not be as it was pre Covid & pre Brexit, there are many challenges we have to overcome, but I feel it is important to get back out in the real world & away from computers & enjoy the live fairs again. We have to deal with the situation we are in & make the show a fabulous event for everyone.
Please read this letter so you don’t miss out on all the IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE SHOW!!
COVID SAFETY: We have all seen over the last 2 years how changeable the rules are in regards to Covid safety. We have been following guidelines closely & working with Kensington Town Hall to work out the best way to keep our staff, exhibitors & visitors safe. At the moment, we think the following rules will apply:
- Entry will only be allowed with EITHER proof of double vaccination OR a negative Covid test, taken in the last 24 hrs. (we are trying to organise to have a nurse on site who can help with lateral flow tests for anyone who arrives without a negative test result).
- More space for exhibitors & customers, with a limited entry allowed.
- One way system
- Mask wearing will be recommended but not compulsory
- Hand sanitisers on all stands. Advice to stallholders about other protection if necessary.
If we feel other rules need to be applied, or, some rules can be discarded prior to the show, we will let you know. The main thing is that everyone is considerate of others & respects that for some, this will be their first time in a busy envionment in almost 2 years, so tensions may be running high.
OVERSEAS EXHIBITORS: We will be especially excited to welcome back our overseas friends. New rules state that anyone travelling to the UK from Europe & the US can enter without self-isolating, if they have been double jabbed. This is a real boost to the show & we hope it will encourage lots of our regulars to return to the show. Unfortunately, our European exhibitors also have to deal with the new Brexit rules, which are confusing. All overseas exhibitors should CLICK HERE for more help with Covid & Brexit issues.
HOTELS: If you need to book a hotel, please CLICK HERE for a list of hotels used in the past by visitors & exhibitors to our show. We have 2 Hotels that are very close to Kensington Town Hall, that give us a special rate. The Copthorne Tara & Holiday Inn- London Kensington. If you want to book either of these hotels, our special rate will not be available after AUGUST 15th, so make sure you book before then (note you may get a cheaper rate on a hotel comparison site, so check these too).
PARKING: We will be offering reduced price tickets for the Town Hall car park. The usual rate for 24hrs is £30-£33. The car park is once again under new management & we are still negotiating the reduced price tickets we can offer you. The tickets available will be a 24hr tickets for Friday and/or Saturday & a Thurs eve ticket (valid from 6pm). This will enable you to leave your vehicle in the car park from 18.00 on Thursday until Midnight on Saturday without moving it if you need. Unlike previous years, you will now not have to book tickets in advance. At the show, you can collect the discount vouchers you need & then you must go to the office in the car park when you are leaving & pay them directly. The vouchers will enable you to have the discounted rate. As soon as they have confirmed this rate we will let you know (last time it was £15 for a 24 hr ticket, but things have probably changed!)
VEHICLE PASSES: EVERYONE who uses the loading bay will need a Vehicle Pass. If you requested one on your contract, you will automatically be emailed a vehicle pass before the show, or you can download one HERE. Please make sure you write your business name clearly in the space provided. You will not be allowed on the loading bay unless your vehicle pass is VISIBLE to our stewards. We only allow one van/per exhibitor unless agreed in advance. We do not expect any exhibitor to spend longer than 20-30 MINS on the loading bay & once you have unloaded, the parking of your vehicle is your responsibility. Please check out parking options in advance (see above).
PIMA’S: Don’t forget you still have time to register for the Perfection in Miniature Awards. These will include The People’s Choice Award which is voted for by the visitors & exhibitors at the show. Fore details CLICK HERE, but I do urge you to enter & have a piece of your work on display in the PIMA showcase. Due to COVID, we are not sure when the winners will be announced, but most likely is during the Exhibitor walk-about breakfast on Saturday morning between 9-10am. We will not be having our usual drinks party on Friday Evening this year.
SHOW CATALOGUE: We produce a beautiful A4, full colour catalogue for our show. This has been really popular with our visitors who all receive a free copy with their entry ticket. The contact details we now print for each exhibitor are as follows: Name, phone number, email, website & other social media addresses. If you do not have email contacts etc, we will print your postal address.
We still have a few spaces available for advertising in the catalogue. A booking form is attached to this email. We always run out of space, so please book early to avoid disappointment. Artwork & contact details deadline is August 25th.
FLOORPLAN: The floorplan will look very different this year. We will be giving more space to exhibitors & there will be a new layout due to our one way system. As we will most likely have late changes to the floorplan, it will not be posted on the Website until the beginning of September this year. If you have any necessary special requests, please let us know.
CAFÉ: We will have a reduced café at the show this year. We will be offering hot & cold drinks, sandwiches & snacks. The café will be unable to offer its usual pre-ordering service, but it will be open from 8.30am on Friday for exhibitors will be able to buy sandwiches etc early. We will have the usual drink station in the Ground Floor kitchen open throughout the show.
CREDIT CARD PAYMENTS: If a customer wishes to pay for goods by card & you do not have a credit card machine, we can take payment for you. We have to charge a fee for this (from £4/transaction) as we will not only have to cover the card charges, but also the admin work involved in this service. This makes it only worthwhile for larger card transactions.
The way people are paying for products has changed dramatically in the past few years, especially since COVID & it is not acceptable to send customers out of the venue to get money from cash machines if they are spending £100’s on an item. There are so many other options for taking payments now. There is no charge if you register for our card service before the show (Click HERE to download the registration form), but we will have to charge a £10 fee if you register at the show.
If you have used this service in the past, you do not need to register again unless your bank details have changed.
SCAM EMAILS: In the past, we have had various companies contacting exhibitors who will be attending the festival & trying to persuade them to pay for an email list of attendees to the show. PLEASE IGNORE THESE EMAILS. Any email that is officially from KDF will be signed by me & be sent from the @dollshouseshowcase email address. Any emails about the show from other email addresses are SCAMS!
CHILDREN’S ACTIVITIES & KDF HELPDESK: We will once again be holding our “MOUSE HUNT” throughout the show. This is incredibly popular with children. You may be asked to have a mouse on your stand. If you don’t want to be part of the hunt that is fine, just say no! We advise that mice are placed in a visible place on your stand so children can spot them easily.
We will not be running the Gingerbread Craft Club or the KDF Helpdesk this time.
LIGHTS: We have a selection of clip on spotlights available to borrow if you need. These are particularly useful for foreign exhibitors who have limited space in their suitcases. PLEASE BOOK THESE WITH US IN ADVANCE TO AVOID DISAPPOINTMENT. If we run out of lights, overseas visitors will be allocated their lights 1st & any remaining can be offered to UK exhibitors. Come to our KDF Reception Desk when you arrive at the show to pick up the lights. You will need to pay a £10/€10 deposit per light, which will be returned to you when you bring the lights back at the end of the show. (You can book a maximum of 2 lights in advance, but if there are any spares, you can take more at the show) We have a few adaptor plugs available too, as well as loads of extension leads.
WIFI: Kensington Town Hall has WiFi available for exhibitors to use. I will include details of how to log on to their wifi in the Stallholders letter that will be emailed to you prior to the May show. (A copy will also be in your exhibitor pack at the show).
KDF CUP: Once again we will be selecting one stand at the Festival to be the recipient of the KDF Cup. The winner will receive a free table (up to 6ft) at the KDF Summer Festival 2022. Stands will be judged on their appearance, display & general ambience, as well as the quality work/products for sale. Click HERE for more information.
SATURDAY WALKABOUT & FRIDAY NIGHT DRINKS: Please remember we have an exhibitor walkabout on Saturday morning. It is Mandatory that your stand is open from 9am. This gives you a chance to look at other stalls at the festival before the show opens. It is a great time to catch up with other craftsmen & discuss collaborations.
We will not be holding our usual Friday Night Drinks for Exhibitors this time, but we plan to have an Exhibitor’s Breakfast during the Saturday Walkabout, where we will provide complimentary breakfast of pastries, juices & hot drinks. This is when we will announce winners of the KDF Cup & the PIMA.
LDF MEMBERS: We have 50 LDF Members, all of who are allowed into the show early (10am on Friday) they are mostly regular visitors. If you would like to offer a special discount or a free gift for members, please let me know & I will inform them in their newsletter before the show. It is a good way to encourage them to visit your table.
FACEBOOK & INSTAGRAM: In the build up to the show we try to post info on facebook twice a week & Instagram posts every day, so we are looking for stories. If you have any pictures of things you’re working on for the show or any other news, please let us know so we can include it.
STALL SITTERS: If you are attending KDF by yourself, we can loan you a KDF staff member to look after you stand while you have a break. Please come to the KDF Reception Desk at the beginning of the show to book your slot.
KDF RECEPTION DESK: The KDF Reception Desk at the show is always very busy. This desk is primarily for the use of visitors to the show, so please note the times that the Reception Desk will be open to KDF Exhibitors.
Thursday Evening: 19.30–21.30.
Friday: 08.00-10.00 + 14.00-17.00.
Saturday: 08.30-10.00 + 14.00-16.00.
You may, of course visit the Reception Desk at any time if it is an urgent matter, but please try to visit the desk within these set times for non-urgent reasons.
YOUR WORK: The Festival remains one of the top events in the world because of your fantastic work. We want all the work on show to be of the highest standard, so please do not bring along anything to sell which is below standard. This will be taken in to account next year when sending out contracts.
OFFICE OPENING TIMES: If there is anything else you need to know that is not covered in this letter, please contact us. It is always best to call between 10.00am and 2pm, but if you leave a message we will always call back. The Office will be closed until September, but we will be answering emails during this time.
The whole KDF team are so looking forward to seeing everyone again.