Long Melford: Weather will not stop fun of the fair

DESPITE the disappointment of being forced to cancel several community events due to bad weather in the past few weeks, organisers of an annual village fair are determined it will go ahead tomorrow, come rain or shine.

John Nunn, chairman of the Long Melford Street Fair committee, said brass bands were tuning up, morris dancers polishing their bells and street vendors preparing their wares for the event on Sunday afternoon, which would go ahead “whatever the weather”.

“It has been unfortunate that the heavy rain has lead to several popular annual shows – such as the Vintage Rally at Melford Hall – being called off this year,” he said.

“However, we are determined that the street fair will go ahead and although you can never be sure, the forecast for Sunday is looking good at this point. It is such a well attended event and we have had a brilliant response from stall holders this year. Hopefully, lots of people will come along and we can make it a real celebration to make up for some of the disappointment of the last few weeks.”

The fair will be officially opened at 3pm by Lord and Lady Hyde-Parker of Melford Hall, with performances from local rock band Route 66 outside the Bull Hotel, and the Long Melford Silver Band near the village Co-op store. Other musical highlights include a special Elvis tribute concert at 5.30pm.

There will also be plenty of entertainment for children including a circus workshop, Punch and Judy show, a magician and a ‘Bubble of Fun’.

For those who missed out when the vintage steam rally was cancelled, a traction engine and several stationary steam engines will be on display. Long Melford fire service accident extraction team will stage a demonstration, while bird lovers will have a chance to view a collection of birds of prey.

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Although the purpose of the fair is to celebrate and have fun, any profits from the event are donated to local charities. The event also enables charitable groups to set up stalls to raise awareness of their causes – and valuable funds from the sale of merchandise.

Mr Nunn added: “The fair is organised by a group of volunteers from the community, including parish councillors and business owners, and it costs about �3,500 to stage, which is entirely self-funded.

“Any excess income we make from the event goes to help Long Melford organisations, such as the local Scout group, which has received �1,500 from us over the past two years towards their new scout hut.”

The fair is scheduled to start at 3pm and will run until 8pm. A grand raffle draw will take place at 7pm.

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