Date: 6 May 2007
Day #2 of this three-day event was mostly a repeat of Day #1: crowded, noisy and everyone seemed to be enthusiastic. I forgot my camera, leaving it in the hotel room. I meant to go back to the hotel in mid-day to retrieve it but never had a chance. There were too many things going on all the time.
Date: 7 May 2007
The third and final day of the National History Show again was a repeat: it was loosely similar to the first two except that the crowds did thin out a bit. To be sure, the exhibition hall remained busy and noisy all day; there was no "downtime."
I left before final attendance figures were announced but the preliminary statistics were great. The show organizers had hoped to attract at least 15,000 attendees, or 5,000 per day. The first day saw just about that number: approximately 5,000. The attendance on the second day reportedly was a bit less but still near 4,000 attendees. When I left for the airport in early afternoon of the third day, more than 3,000 people had visited and more were still coming in the front door.
The attendance obviously was just a bit less than hoped for but still far exceeded the attendance numbers of any other genealogy or heritage event that I have ever seen. One image that will stick in my mind for many ears is that of a crowded exhibits hall on Saturday with roughly 5,000 noisy and enthusiastic genealogists in the place. In short, I'd say the attendance was a success and the numbers are something that the organizers should be proud of.
NOTE: The entrance fee of £20 was for one day, not all three. This seemed appropriate as each day was essentially a repeat of the previous day; few people had any reason to return a second time. Most attendees were able to see all the exhibits and products of interest in one day.
I was delighted to learn that the show organizers have already signed an agreement to rent the same hall on the same weekend next year. With one successful experience already behind them, I can only speculate how big next year's show will be! I hope to be there to see it. If you are thinking of a vacation in England next year, you might want to plan your trip around a day or two spent in Kensington.