From the end of February to the middle of March I spent three weeks immersing myself in life at Strathmashie. Greeted by breathtaking scenery and clean air it was at once obvious why the Spartan group had relocated to this part of the country. Living as a member in the Goddard household (bolstered by a variety of well natured and magnificent animals) I was given the opportunity to work in a variety of roles, seeing the whole process of publishing.
I saw new submissions come in, taking on design and typesetting in both Sibelius 5 which I was already accustomed to, and Score which I was given tuition in. I saw the process of printing music and CD’s and worked in the ‘finishing’ room; folding, collating and stitching new music for it to be ready for sale. Some time was also spent in the in the warehouse organising stock under the watchful eye of Zeus, the all knowing computer system. I worked within the retail outlets – both Spartan and Fuller – taking orders and subsequently pulling, packing and dispatching them to the customers. No job too big or too small I even helped to fix a gate in the garden.
Aside from work I was fully welcomed into the family and company way of life. I played board games, went walking, and enjoyed family films and test cricket, squeezing in the occasional trip to the pub and a village quiz. I was schooled in some of the finer points of ballet technique, computer gaming and serious bracelet making by the three younger members of the family. A highlight was seeing the preparation and performance of the magnum opus ‘Meet the Spartans’ in the regional music festival. A fantastic and worthwhile visit to a very special location.