Things haven’t been as quiet as the blog might suggest…

Things haven’t been as quiet as the blog might suggest…

This week my mind has been occupied with very practical things. At midnight on Sunday tickets for the Order of Bards Ovates and Druids Special Summer Gathering went on sale. Or rather they should have gone on sale. I stayed up to press the button to make the online booking form live, and just after I did that I thought I’d just check that all was ok by logging in myself. The site had already gone down. I thought the Gathering would be popular – next June the Order’s current Chosen Chief, Philip Carr-Gomm, the man responsible (along with his wife and Scribe of the Order, Stephanie Carr-Gomm) for the re-founding of the Order, and it’s courses, will be stepping down and handing over to a new Chosen Chief, Eimear Burke. Quite a momentous occasion in the history of the Order and subsequently people want to be there to witness it. So on I go to social media, Facebook groups and email to explain that the site has crashed and I’d get onto the IT people first thing in the morning.

So I did.

People were already booking while we were still testing the site.

In 2014 the Order had celebrated its 50th Anniversary by increasing the numbers for the Summer Gathering from 200 to 400, hiring a marquee in the Glastonbury Abbey grounds and holding a celebratory weekend party. It was wonderful. So we thought we would have the same set up for 2020. 400 people. The site finally went live at 10.30 am, and the event was sold out 5 hours later…

These were uncharted waters for the OBOD and its annual Gatherings.

So I took the ticket booking site offline at 3.30 pm. And then all of the emails began to pour in from those who had missed out. And there were lots.

I’ve heard it said that there are no problems, only opportunities. So I got onto the venue, and the marquee company, and it looks like we can increase numbers, but the space we have in the venue will still limit the size of marquee we can hire. I arranged a meeting with them to measure up the space a week on Sunday, then we shall know.

It really is quite wonderful that so many OBOD members want to share the occasion, and I know it must warm Philip’s heart to know how loved he is by so many people around the world. People for whom the Order, and its courses, have helped them feel part of something bigger, something important, that it has given them peace, hope and a spiritual connection in an otherwise quite bonkers world.

So, as I said, my mind has been on very practical things, hence the blog has been quiet.

However, next year’s OBOD Summer Gathering, and the event that will be happening there, has also made me somewhat reflective – about my years as a member of the Order, the things I’ve experienced, the changes I’ve seen, the way sending off that stamp-addressed envelope back in the early 90s has changed my life. So I think there will be some articles about that showing up over the next few months.

13 responses to “Things haven’t been as quiet as the blog might suggest…”

  1. I felt for you on Sunday night – I have to arrange such things in a very different capacity and know the level of stress technology can create and the sense of failure with people expecting you to work some miracle to put it right instantly. Been there and done that. So well done for keeping your head whilst all around you…

    I’m one of the lucky ones – very much looking forward to it and hopefully saying hello to you and Cerri.

  2. You can always count on technology to change your plans, when you least expect it 😉 I would love to be at the gathering if there are still tickets to be had. I have been living over in Ireland for the last 12 years and really miss seeing everyone. How will I find out how to get tickets when the space has been re-measured?

  3. I was one of the people unknowingly booking whilst you where still testing . I just thought I would give it one last go before evening, got in, then panicked, and went through to the end. 7 minutes later you put on face book, site being tested , please don’t book ( words to,,,) oh no!!! I couldn’t apologise, as that would alert people they could book!
    So, I am very sorry To have added to your complications, but very happy to be able to attend.

  4. I wasn’t even aware that the tickets were going on sale. What happened to facebook and emails from OBOD? I would love to be there too…

    • Send me and email to and I’ll add you to the folder for more information. A flyer went out with the Order’s newsletter, Touchstone, with booking details. We can’t put the booking details in a public place like Facebook as they are members/only events.

  5. You’ve got to love technology. Has anyone mentioned the idea of doing a live stream from the event for those who can’t make it to Glastonbury?

    • Nice idea. But seeing as how ‘well’ technology worked with people just booking the tickets I don’t think my nerves would handle organising that at the moment. Also, the main ceremony will be outside in the Abbey grounds, not in the marquee itself.

  6. seems to me that this is a testament to the fact that druidic pagan belief is growing! Which is exciting. Hope I can make it over the Pond to one of these gatherings….ps. when I type in my website at the correct spot, this site kept asking me for a URL ..?

  7. As always…. Thanks for all you do good Sir. We are really looking forward to attending this very special event. Once in a lifetime. See you next week ! Blessings. M & C. Xxx

  8. Well done Damh and congratulations to all those of you with tickets. We will be with you in spirit and look forward to hearing the reports and seeing the pics.x

  9. Some of my lovely Druid friends got tickets and are coming all the way from West Oz. They are super excited and i am so happy for them to be able to go. Looking forward to many accounts of the occasion, as many as possible! And yes Philip is very loved. If you look at a leader of an Order as an example of what one will become by following a path, then he definitely shows us this is a good path to be on!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.