Wednesday, September 28, 2016
by Kelly Duggan

Celebrating summer Denfield-style

With sunshine in the studio and the summer holiday season in full swing, there’s a great vibe in the agency, with lunchtime picnics in the park and ice creams in abundance. We’ve had a particularly exciting summertime here at Denfield, from Party in the (Car) Park to some epic adventures abroad, all adding to the usual agency hum with the team preparing upcoming campaigns.

A few of us have taken some well-earned time off to recharge before Q3 begins, so here’s what some members of the Denfield team have been up to on their travels this summer, enjoying vacations and staycations galore.

Party in the (Car) Park

The Social Den put together a great summer celebration for the whole agency, transforming the Denfield car park into a feel-good festival on a Friday night in July - complete with Denfield green bunting. We all clocked off (slightly) early to get out in the sunshine and make the most of the short but sweet British summer.

A 1980s caravan-come-bar kept the cocktails flowing, a hog roast kept the hungry folk happy and a coconut shy kept the energetic out of mischief. A great evening was had by all, chatting on hay bales over a drink and dressing up and posing for the photo booth; what a way to celebrate the summer!

Amy Marsh - Thailand

My holiday started in busy Bangkok where me and a few friends risked our lives in the back of a tuk tuk, haggled in the markets and ate all kinds of street food. While we were there, we spent the day at an elephant sanctuary, which was amazing! We helped to feed and bathe them, and we even had a water fight with the elephants in the lake!

We then moved onto the islands, visiting the beautiful Koh Samui, Koh Tao and Koh Phangan. Swimming in the clear sea, lying in the blazing sun and enjoying the Thai massages… it was bliss!

Mike Hillard - France

I spent my life savings travelling to, from and across France by plane, train, car and boat. From Bordeaux to Paris, Toulouse to Lille, chasing the dream with Gareth Bale & Co. as underdogs Wales looked to conquer Euro 2016.

After 20+ years watching England (and even Scotland!) at major tournaments, the wait was finally over, as 58 years after Pelé knocked us out of our only previous tournament appearance, the country’s dream was finally a reality. Having only bought tickets for the first four games in the group stage – ever the optimist – I managed to get tickets for the next game and then the next, using dodgy 3G signal in the middle of France and when crossing the Channel as we roared our way to the semi-finals.

I still think about this phenomenal experience even now - our first goal in Bordeaux, the devastating injury time loss to England, the demolition of the Russians, and Hal Robson-Kanu’s turn against Belgium. Despite all the joy, I’m still having nightmares where I see Ronaldo rise like a salmon to end the journey. Hopefully I won’t have to wait 60 years for the next one!

Debbie Collin - Croatia

This summer I went to Croatia on a sailing trip around the islands with my friend Steph, who I met when I was travelling in Australia a few years ago. After a couple of days relaxing in Split, we boarded the ship Dionis, which was our home for the next week. We sailed to Makarska first, then on to Korcula which is known for the explorer Marco Polo.

The days were filled with sunbathing sessions, swim stops and cocktails. In the evenings we got to check out the islands. We also visited Dubrovnik for some sightseeing, Trstenik, which is one of the quieter islands and Hvar, known for its party scene. The best thing about the trip was waking up in a different destination every day, along with some amazing sunsets. Eat, sleep, travel, repeat.

Charlotte Steel - Scotland

This June, I went on my greatest adventure yet, and not necessarily because of the destination – it was the people. Two days after getting married, my new husband and I took our eight-month old son, William, on his first holiday for a truly fantastic ‘family moon’.

During our seven-day break in sunny Scotland, we also celebrated my birthday and my husband’s birthday - and on the very same day, his first Father’s Day. We drove wherever the roads led without much of a plan, stopping in Glasgow first, then on to my birthday surprise – a night’s stay in Cameron House, a luxury five-star hotel overlooking Loch Lomond.

A flat tyre meant an unintended couple of nights in the beautiful village of Taynuilt. When we were back on the road, we explored Oban with its stunning views, then drove up to Fort William, getting the obligatory photo of William under the town’s sign. We managed to squeeze in a stop in Edinburgh on the way home to check another Scottish city off the list of destinations. It was a great start to married life and we’ve ticked off William’s first road trip!

Kelly Duggan - Hungary

I travelled with my boyfriend on a 10-day cross-country route through Hungary and Slovakia, starting with two days in Budapest. After exploring a few tourist hotspots, we went our separate ways for our friends’ hen and stag dos, hopping between charming yet rugged ruin bars. The next day, a rather rickety train took us to Balatonfüred on the northern side of Lake Balaton, the largest lake in Central Europe.

On a beautiful vineyard overlooking the lake and a National Park, our friends tied the knot in traditional Hungarian style with a truly stunning backdrop. When the celebrations ended, we travelled on to Kőszeg for four days near the Austrian border and stayed with my uncle and aunt, then drove to Bratislava to round off the trip with a taste of Slovakian culture.

Matt Clifford - Switzerland

I recently visited Spiez in Switzerland, nestled on the shores of Lake Thunersee, with its picturesque harbour and views stretching out on the lake surrounded by alpine mountains. I went with my girlfriend and stayed for seven nights in the stunning landscape, visiting several other towns around the lake on boat trips, visiting museums and generally just basking in the sun, drinking beer and eating amazing food.

Emily Edgington - Portugal

In May this year, we had the best week of our lives spending our first family holiday in Lagos, Portugal. We stayed in a lovely villa in the heart of the town, with our very own pool and stunning views overlooking the sea. We shared our villa with 10 of our closest family members and friends, and we had the most amazing time! From the most extreme water fights to barbecuing whilst watching the sunset, every day was truly magical.

Portugal is our favourite country and we visit there at least once a year. It really does have everything, with its stunning beaches, luscious food and the most beautiful historic towns – it’s the perfect destination.

My favourite part of our trip was taking our little boy, Mason, swimming in the sea for the very first time. Although a little nervous at first, he absolutely loved it and I cannot wait to take him again next year!

Justine Clarke – Turkey

I spent a week in June in the enchanting coastal town of Kalkan, Turkey, with my fiancé Matt and a group of friends. We all enjoyed some sunny rest and relaxation, soaking up the rays and exploring our beautiful surroundings.

We struck the right balance between poolside chilling at the villa and adventurous days out and about. Highlights included sea-trampolining with a GoPro, visiting the Roman ruins at Patara, mud-bathing and snorkelling in the turquoise waters of the Lycian coastline, dining out on freshly-caught trout at a fish farm up in the hills, and bombing down the rapids of Saklikent Gorge in a rubber ring! Oh, and we also celebrated Matt’s birthday with a 70s-inspired fancy dress pool party!

The customary warm Turkish hospitality and being with fantastic friends meant that a happy holiday was had by all; I hope we get to return next year to do it all over again!

Lynda Roberts – Lake District

To make the most of the recent good weather, we decided to celebrate our second wedding anniversary with a weekend in the beautiful Lake District. Staying in the popular town of Windermere, we arrived just in time to make last orders at the local pub and celebrated by sampling a few gins from the extensive gin menu (yep, a whole menu, just for gin, 28 different ones), my kind of place!

Typically, for the next two days it pretty much rained non-stop, but we still had a great time. A celebratory spa day, a visit to Beatrix Potter’s house and gallery, as well as some delicious meals out all combined to make a great mini break. We even managed to get up into the hills above the Lakes on our final day to get some pics of the scenery!

A leisurely drive back (or sitting in traffic as some might call it), with a stop off for fish and chips in Morecambe finished off the trip nicely! Now to start planning the next holiday…