“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”
Alan Wilson Watts
Its been 9 years since I started up Seaton Eats Boutique. We’ve had 33 events, including Christmas markets. Thats pretty darn good given that there were forces who tried to kybosh it from the get go. It is however time this caravan of traders moved on. Seaton Eats has become financially unviable and we’re off to continue our adventures in other towns along the Jurassic coast.
I recently announced also that Sidmouth Eats had reached an end too, though for different reasons. Coming to such decisions isn’t easy at all – it will feel like I’m abandoning the community by withdrawing these events. So I want to reframe the sense of loss into something thats positive, and cause for celebration.
Endings are simply transitions from one thing to another.
When we started Seaton Eats there were not so many places to eat great food in Seaton. Since then we’ve seen some fantastic new restaurants open up, an Asian supermarket appear on our high street and themed supper nights in lots of venues. We’ve gathered in spaces that were under used and overlooked, and seen our coastline from a different perspective. These incredible community assets are Seaton’s gems and deserve to be used for more community occasions. Hopefully you’ve tried cuisine that you might have felt shy about trying in another setting, and more hopefully, you’ve fallen in love with it. We’ve shown the power of the collective voice by rising together to make these events a success and overcome obstacles. We’ve felt the value of the community dining experience. And you’ve helped me to create 2 businesses- Eats Boutique and The Salty Arms, for which I won an award. Most significantly I have met some absolutely brilliant people through Seaton Eats – I hope you have too. The sense of community ownership that you all have for this event is astonishing. There is so so much to be grateful for.
This is the end of something wonderful in my home community, but its not the end of my work in Seaton. As many of you know I’m on of the directors of Seaton Chamber CIC, which formed as a direct result of a regeneration strategy project group. There’s a lot of invisible work going on right now but I promise you that this is a movement that is happening. Everyone – businesses and individuals are invited to join us.
I like the quote by philosopher Alan Wilson Watts because it reminds me that nothing is permanent, and that by trying to hold on to something for ever after makes us stressed, fearful, rigid. When you dance you move your body in a different way. I’ve been dancing a lot this year (literally) and it feeeeels good! I’m sticking with that. I’m embracing change, I’m stepping into something different and I’m hitting that dancefloor.
This is the end of Seaton Eats but its not the end of Eats Boutique. I would love for you to stay in touch and visit us in our other locations – Lyme Regis on the 3rd Friday of the month and Axminster on the 4th Friday (in a new venue – ooer). On the 1st Friday of the month we’ll be popping up in a new community, so keep your eyes peeled for lots of juicy news in the weeks to come.
So farewell Seaton Eats Boutique, and thank you. Its been an absolute pleasure to serve you.