Downpour leaves fayre organiser in tears
By John HowardA STREET fayre organiser was close to tears last night after a year's worth of preparations were wrecked as the heavens opened.About 4,000 people usually flock to the annual bank holiday street fayre in Mendlesham, but yesterday's event was badly disrupted when estimated half an inch of rain fell.
By John Howard
A STREET fayre organiser was close to tears last night after a year's worth of preparations were wrecked as the heavens opened.
About 4,000 people usually flock to the annual bank holiday street fayre in Mendlesham, but yesterday's event was badly disrupted when estimated half an inch of rain fell.
The jazz band players were reluctant to play for fear of damaging their instruments, while fairgoers' cars had to be towed off the playing field by tractors after the rain caused slippery and muddy driving conditions there.
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Stallholders were also reluctant to stay and organiser, Carolyn Triscott, chairman of the Mendlesham Community Council and street fayre committee, feared the event - which helps raise funds for play equipment - may even have lost money.
"I have been close to tears, it is so, so sad. The heavens really opened just before we started the procession," she said.
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"The little girls in their robes were amazing and made up for the rain, they kept smiling despite getting drenched. They did us proud.
"The jazz band refused to go with them, but the Morris Men joined in. We had to tell the stallholders to wait - if one had gone, the others would follow. It's a tragedy and such a great disappointment for everybody.
"I felt like having a little cry this afternoon, it's just not fair. We have worked for almost a year preparing for today and I think we may have lost money. I have helped organise this for 14 years and have never had such a day. But I will carry on, as will the street fayre."
Mendlesham Street Fayre has been running for 24 years and is organised by the village community council.
It is sponsored by the East Anglian Daily Times and is usually a hugely-popular bank holiday event that attracts about 4,000 people every year, but yesterday's rain meant there were no more than 2,000 people.
Centred around Old Market Street in Mendlesham, it started with a procession led by May princess Dawn Hollis and attendants, Nadia Sadler and Rebecca Morris. There was also an art exhibition in the community centre, which proved popular because it was indoors.