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  • Sam Swann

Event Review - Grill n Chill

13th – 15th September 2019.

Grill n Chill is a laid-back weekend for classic car enthusiasts at The Hop Farm in Paddock Wood, Kent. There is a ‘show and shine’ where cars, vans, beach buggy’s and campers all park up together to be judged. People attending for the weekend, or even just the day, can have look round at some of the amazing and very beautiful vehicles. Some of the VW campervans are incredible and would make anyone fall in love with campervans and camping.

If you want to stay for the whole weekend you can arrive from the Friday afternoon, camp Friday and Saturday night and then you don’t have to leave the site until around 3pm on the Sunday.

There are food venders on site, ranging from pizza and fish and chips to Thai food and doughnuts. The Thai company did amazing Pad Thai, noodles and Thai Green Curry.

Additional to the food venders there were stalls selling so many different types of products. Many stall holders were local, small companies selling homemade items, such as headbands, toys and pet accessories. There was also the much loved Vantastic clothing stall selling brilliantly priced VolksWagen t-shirts, jumpers and hoodies, including children’s sizes too. My husband loves these hoodies and brought 2 this year!

Stalls that my children loved were the craft stalls where you can paint and make an array of crafty bits and then take them home. The other very big hit over the weekend was the ‘Slushy’ stall. This vender is at many of the local shows and festivals around Kent. They sell Tupperware boxes of sweets for £1 and about 15 different varieties / flavours of slush puppies. If you buy (and keep) their own plastic bottles you can return to the stall during the weekend and just get the bottle filled up again for a lower price. This was especially ideal this weekend as it was super hot.

Throughout the weekend there is some live music and a few small shows at the mini BMX skate park. They also did a children’s disco on the Saturday evening and also a children’s story time at two or three different times on the Saturday. In the evenings there was music and bands playing inside. This was more for people without children as it went on until at least 11pm. We tended to stay around our camp area at night as we had a few children in our group.

With day or weekend tickets we were able to use the Hop Farm facilities next door, for free. We got free entry, saw the animals and use the play areas, all included with our Grill n Chill wristbands.

It was a lovely weekend with friends, made better with the amazing weather we had. One of the down sides to the weekend was that there were no shower facilities. We were local enough (and lucky enough) for me to pop home for a shower and freshen up.

One other down side to the weekend was how busy the inside bar area was. A couple of times we went to the bar, it was so busy it was at least 3 people deep, and quite a wait to get served.

If going with a group of people, look into ‘Club Camping’. This is when you can pre-book an area so you can all camp in an area together. You can pick a Club Camping name and when you arrive on site you find the sign with your groups name on it…… perfect.

If you book ‘General Camping’ it is a free -for-all, first come first serve pitch up. So if you are with other people you may not be able to find pitches next to each other. For us one of the great things about camping is to be with friends and enjoy the time together and having the kids play together as well.

Grill n Chill didn’t run in 2018, I’m unsure why, but it ran the year before, in 2017, which we went to. So if you are interested in attending do have a good read on their website to make sure it is on.

Lucas waiting eagerly for the BMX stunts to start.

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