Bisterne Scarecrow Festival Trail 2019

With the rain hammering down and leaking through the Velux window onto the kitchen table; and with a boiler that isn’t working I consoled myself with drafting this post. Just to recap, Jackie had taken me around the trail yesterday afternoon so that I would have something to work on during these expected conditions today.

As usual we bought a map and list of entrants to the competition at Tyrells Ford Country Inn whose exhibit, “One Giant Leap”, celebrated the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing, as did

“One Small Step” at Garden Cottage.

“Clowning Around” seems an apt title to front the old schoolmistress’s house on which we had put an offer before we bought our current home. No sooner had we done so than the owner removed it from the market. We understood that this was not the first time.

It would have been our “Retirement Home”. This one at Kingston even has its own

bench for those who may wish to sit and contemplate it: and

a comely receptionist ready to welcome prospective residents.

Down a track nearby is found The Hungry Caterpillar eating a melon to make his “Vegan Protest”.

Our paths have often crossed those of Catherine and Michelle who make visiting these scarecrows an annual trip. This time we first met them outside “Kingston Retirement Home”, and again when we approached

“Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory” where

Catherine was photographing Michelle among the straw men at the table. By the time I had disembarked they had finished. Naturally I asked them to repeat the exercise.

Almost opposite “Clowning Around” we find “Woodland Fairies” and their neighbours

“The Flower Fairies”.

“SpongeBob StrawPants” pays homage to an American animated cartoon of a slightly similar name. He stands opposite the entrance to Dragon Lane where we find

“Aliens Love Underpants”, referencing Claire Freedman’s colouring and activity book with stickers.

In the grounds of St Paul’s church we find “St Paul Shipwrecked in Malta”. tells us that

‘According to the ‘Acts of the Apostles’ Paul was being taken to Rome to be tried as a political rebel, however, the ship carrying him and some 274 others were caught in a violent storm only to be wrecked two weeks later on the Maltese coast, all aboard swam safely to land. Even though the actual site of the wreck is a mystery by tradition the event took place in and around St. Paul’s Bay and St. Paul’s Island, today a statue sits in commemoration of the event.’

“Hoopy Loopy” is a game designed for children and parents.

While I was reading the rules for “Jeepers Creepers”, I noticed a small boy emerging from a car and asked him if he had parental supervision. Even though I smiled nicely the joke fell flat because he didn’t speak English. He returned to the vehicle and returned with his father. This was good because his Dad spoke excellent English. The boy climbed over the five barred gate to which the legend was fixed, and


the scary character on the cross.

“There was an old woman who lived in a shoe” certainly had

many children, and she did know what to do. She let them amuse themselves while

she sat indoors with her dog.

On Charles’s Lane stand “Scarecrow FC take on Bisterne Best” and “The Blue Abyss”.

“Lest We Forget” remembers two world wars.

The hat fell off the scarecrow as we arrived, and continued to wobble after I replaced it.

The 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings was commemorated by D-Day Dan and by the thorough

D-Day 75 at Rose Cottage, Bagnum. This was the work of the engaging Terrie (?sp) with whom I had a pleasant conversation, and her mother who had knitted all the poppies. They were so pleased that the strings of planes and the parachutes in the bushes survived last weekend’s gales.

Terrie’s mother had found a suitable object for a the cigarette drooping from the wounded soldier’s lips.

Note the rifleman

and the details on the beams.

At Lower Bisterne Farm Lay-by we find “Woody and Forky” and

“Resting scarecrow (on a tea break)”.

“Penguin Prom” has been adjudged champion.

I understand that penguin fathers take care of

the children.

On the opposite side of Christchurch Road we witness a “Puuurrfect Rescue” from a first floor window,

while Elliot takes ET for a bike ride.

“Stargazing” takes place on the green at Hampshire Hatches.

Finally, beware of “The Wonky Workforce”

whose supervisor takes a break

while mayhem ensues. Fatal accidents abound, while those who have tipped out the gravel

remain fixed, horrified, in their cab.

I was grateful that this marathon was interrupted by Jackie serving up chicken kebabs in herbs and garlic on a bed of her delicious savoury rice with which I imbibed El Zumbido Garnacha Syrah 2017, completing the post with the aid of a second glass.

Later I watched the brief recorded cricket highlights.


  1. What an incredible amount of effort goes into these displays. The last one is quite spectacular though isn’t it – quite the cautionary tale! 🙂 We enjoyed a lovely warm and sunny day yesterday. I got quite excited and opened up doors and windows and turned off the heating and went for two long walks with Siddy – but today we are back to cold and wet…….

  2. What a fantastic display! You can tell that an enormous amount of work has gone into some of these. I too liked the penguins. Great photos as always Derrick.

  3. What a superb tour. I am always amazed by the energy and imagination of the people who make ‘scarecrows’ for these exhibitions. There must be something about the challenge which is particularly stimulating.

  4. This is fantastic!! I just can’t imagine how much hard work with wonderful creativity you all did for celebration. This is humongous!!! As usual loved your post and pictures. Have a great weekend!

  5. I loved the woodland fairies, and the fireman rescuing the kitty cat. There are so many great ones, of course — the creativity is marvelous. I’m so glad you took the time to give us a nice, full tour. I really enjoyed it — a lot!

  6. There are some startling displays! I never expected accident victims to be remembered in a scarecrow show. Those folks have put in serious blood and sweat in their exhibits.

  7. What a fantastic show of diversity and creativity! Some of these scarecrows are pretty scary. I bet they’re even scarier in person. I do love those woodland fairies.

  8. Oh! 😮 What creative scarecrow-makers! 🙂 And some displays with important messages to share! I love seeing all of the scarecrows! I must say…I was especially taken by the supervisor on his break. 😀
    I imagine there weren’t many crows hangin’ around! 😛
    HUGS!!! 🙂

  9. These scarecrows are always such fun. And I have some sympathy for your vacillating seller. The head probably says it’s time to move on, but the heart does not want to leave. All well and good to have it on the market and satisfy the head, but when an offer is made, the heart rules. Well, you have made a wonderful choice in the house you have now – but oh my! That blasted boiler! Wasn’t it fixed recently?

  10. They are all ,marvellous but “The Wonky Workforce” is my own particular favourite. It recalled those summer holiday jobs in students days, now some forty five years ago.

  11. The villagers came up with some great ideas, loved the tour thank you.
    Our village has a scarecrow hunt every July. My late husband used to participate as did my eldest daughter and her husband. So much time and effort went into creating their exhibits which were usually placed on display in the centre of the village. Happy days!

  12. Such creativity and endeavour – matched only by the poster on his blog! 🙂

    My favourites where the Hungry Caterpillar and the Oompah-loompahs at the chocolate factory although all deserved a prize. I also loved the two small stick figures on Hoopy Loopy. 🙂

    I see you got your wish with the rain yesterday…. although a part of me suspects that you now wish you had been more careful what you wished for?? We”l have to see if Stevie boy can save us yet again?? I suspect this one will end a draw.

  13. Such creativity–and so much effort–goes into making these. I amazed every year when you share them. These seem particularly good this year. The ones that stood out for me: the clever giant step, the elaborate retirement home, the poignant “Lest We Forget,” and that last, “The Wonky Workforce”–the man in the cab’s expression!

    1. Thanks very much, Merril. I took two pictures of the giant step. Only when I got nearer did I realise what the white object was, so changed my angle. I think this is possibly the best year we have seen – perhaps because there was no set theme.

  14. These are outstanding, Derrick! From honoring the world wars to the astronauts, real life and fantasy. The scariest scarecrow looks like “Freddie Kruger” and that should scare any body!!

  15. So many clever entries this year!! Sponge Bob Strawpants, ha ha ha!! I do love the faeries, and the caterpillar in the straw watermelon, and of course the retirement home. It’s an interesting story about St. Paul that I did not know. And I can’t resist the scarecrow on a tea break. Thank you for this great collection.

Leave a Reply