‘Don’t let feast die’ says showman

All the fun of the fair will still be there for this year's Metheringham Feast. EMN-150914-132944001
All the fun of the fair will still be there for this year's Metheringham Feast. EMN-150914-132944001

Travelling showmen are anxious to reassure potential visitors that they will still be attending Metheringham Feast this year, despite the abandonment of the street market.

It was reported in The Standard that the small organising committee for the feast had been unable to recruit sufficient volunteers to marshall the parade and street event next month and would now look to kick start things properly again next year.

The Feast has been running for many years but 26 years ago, it was faced with a major crisis when it looked as if it might disappear altogether. The showmen, who had been keeping the event alive, by erecting their rides and stalls on the yard behind the Star and Garter pub, were seriously considering giving the whole event up. But the Parish Council stepped in to create a carnival in the main streets on Feast Saturday and the event was able to continue.

Next month, the fairground attractions will open as usual on the Star and Garter yard, but there will be nothing in the street.

Showman Pat Phillips said: “The rumours are that the fun fair is not going ahead, but I am trying to impress on people that it is business as usual for us. We have been going to Metheringham since before the street market and will be there this year and next year, no matter what, so I am trying to get the word out.”

He said: “When Mick Credland decided to have the street market 26 years ago it gave it a boost and made it better for us and the village. My wife’s grandfather was a showman who visited here for the feast. We go to Billinghay Feast as well. We mustn’t let it die.”

The fun fair will run from Friday, October 23, to Tuesday, October 27, and will be offering all rides at the discounted rate of £1 on the Monday.

Peter Brown shall be at the fair on the Saturday from 2-5pm as Pedro the Clown.

He said: “I have a long association with the Feast, although I have never been a Metheringham resident. The parish council was kind enough to ask me to open the Feast a few years ago and I have appeared at the event a couple of other times in recent years. In attending this year it is my own very modest contribution towards helping to keep the Feast going.”