Whitegate May Fair marks the start of the summer though this year, as often before, it seems that climatic forces have failed to take note of that. However Saturday 16th May dawned sunny, if rather cool and windy.
The weeks of preparation and planning came good and on the Friday evening the set up team launched into action. Stands, chairs, tables and even a marquee appeared, as if from nowhere, together with willing helpers to erect everything on Church Green, prepare the Mews and the School for teas and mark out the car park
And so to Saturday, when the stage and maypole were decorated and stallholders arrived with carloads of goods for sale, games to play and food to eat; towards midday came the children, ready to dance and parents armed with cameras to record the scene. Throughout it all, sandwich-making continued unseen, in the Mews and School.
Once the fun started, it ran like clockwork – well, almost. But it’s the little glitches that make for the charm of this hugely popular village event. The vicar gave a splendid opening speech, but then forgot to actually declare the fair “open”. A shoe lost in the dancing made everyone smile –even more so when the little one ran back to retrieve it, causing a pile up with the other dancers skipping on regardless. Memories are made of these!
St Mary’s was open of course, and those who wanted time out from the hustle and bustle were entertained by Andrew Millinchip who gave a short organ recital. Towards the end of a fabulous afternoon in the sunshine, the raffle was drawn and the Joan Leadbeater Cup for the best-dressed stall was awarded, this year to the Mews Teas.
The fair was a huge success, financially the best ever as it made a profit of £5,820. Hundreds of people played a part in that splendid result and we thank every one of them. There was a real buzz around the fair and it was thrilling to witness the community spirit evident from planning and preparation right through to the final clear-up. Roll on 2016!