Last year I went to SharePoint Saturday UK as an attendee and had a very good time. And that’s probably an understatement. Coming back as a speaker was a very pleasant experience too! Now having already met a lot of the UK SharePoint community people before I knew I was in for a treat. The event was put together very well and my session went great – although I ran out of time quickly so I couldn’t do all my demo’s unfortunately. Maybe I’ll record them one of these days and publish them on my blog.
On Friday afternoon I arrived with my colleague Elio Struyf at Birmingham airport were Peter Baddeley was so kind to pick us up and take us to the venue. Our four colleagues that came by car were less fortunate because the weather wreaked havoc on the road between Brussels and Hinckley. We were joined by Marijn Somers – another Belgian speaker – who also came by car. He would be our chauffeur for the weekend.
The speaker dinner took place in The Bell Inn, tucked away in the English countryside. While driving towards Monks Kirby, although it was dark, I imagined a lot of the English countryside stereotypes along the road (Range Rovers, tweed and labradors). The food was delicious and it was nice to meet so many old & new friends.
The event itself went smooth and I saw some very interesting sessions by Paul Beck, Sam Hassani and Callum Shillan. Due to a problem with my demo environment (it’s always permissions, but this time it was a typo) I didn’t have much time to sit in on any other sessions. Looking forward to going over some slide decks in the next days.
Saturday evening we had a nice SharePint in the hotel bar but of course my Belgian friends brought some Belgian beer from a microbrewery to organize a tasting session for a select crowd. I was in bed quite early but a lot of people didn’t. What happens in Hinckley stays in Hinckley – although that’s hard when you get mentioned in a tweet by Jeremy Thake who has thousands of followers 🙂
On Sunday Gus Fraser accompanied us to Birmingham to do some sightseeing. Although nice, we only had time for a quick pizza, a stroll around the city center and we were off to Brussels again.
I especially want to thank Brett Lonsdale & Mark Macrae for organizing yet another fantastic event. I’ll be back next year! We also went home with a long list of people willing to speak at next year’s SharePoint Saturday in Belgium. We’ll keep you posted.