Enjoy the event but stay safe message to visitors of the Bury St Edmunds Christmas Fayre

Bury St Edmunds Christmas Fayre in 2016. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Bury St Edmunds Christmas Fayre in 2016. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

Enjoy the festivities and occasion and stay safe ... that’s the message from organisers of the annual Bury St Edmunds Christmas Fayre, the single biggest event that takes place in the town each year.

It comes as hightened security is being implemented at the event which attracts tens of thousands of people from the town and further afield and runs from Thursday to Sunday, November 23 to 26.

This year there will be increased security with bollard and barrier systems, and patrols by uniformed and plain clothed police officers, both armed and unarmed, plus police dogs. This is in light of the recent national and international terror threats.

And John Griffiths, the leader of St Edmundsbury Borough Council said: “As organisers, St Edmundsbury knows from the feedback that it receives, that many people both in Bury and from outside of the town, enjoy the friendly, festive atmosphere of the fayre. It’s here for you so take part and enjoy it. On top of this we also know that the fayre provides a huge boost to the local economy attracting visitors from far and wide.”

And he added: “While there is no evidence of any specific threat, like any other large events across the UK, you may see a range of physical security measures at this year’s Christmas Fayre as a precaution. They include a variety of effective bollard and barrier systems that have been approved and meet national standards.

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“Some of our measures have also been designed and integrated as part of our street furniture to blend into the aesthetics of our beautiful town, so they may not be apparent, but they are there. We would encourage visitors to say hello to officers and also give them your support as they will also be on patrol and are part of public services working together to support our communities and help people enjoy this great event.”

A Suffolk police spokesman said they will have uniformed (armed and unarmed), plain clothed patrols and police dogs in the town during the fayre.

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As well as the lantern parade the opening event includes late night shopping and the East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) Carol Concert, in St Edmundsbury Cathedral, at 6pm, followed by a fireworks finale in the Abbey Gardens, at around 7.45pm.

The fayre then resumes from 9am to 8pm on both the Friday and Saturday, and from 10am to 5pm on the Sunday.

A Park and Ride service will operate from the Friday through till the close of Sunday, while the council’s car park in Olding Road – approximately 10 minutes from the town centre – will serve as a free Park and Walk facility for the Saturday and Sunday. Additional car parks will also be provide during the fayre courtesy of Greene King.

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