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Village fête celebrates ruby anniversary

The ever-popular Nunney Street Market & Fayre takes place for the 40th time in succession on Saturday 1st August.

Rated one of the best village fêtes in the country by The Times, Nunney Street Market & Fayre has raised over £40,000 for local charities and community groups in the last five years alone. The majority of this money benefits projects like the children’s playground, local heritage and community groups.

The history of the event goes back to a royal charter granted by King Henry III in 1260 for a weekly market and annual fair in the village. The fair was briefly revived in the Fifties, when Sir Stirling Moss – a driver for local Lord of the Manor and racing team owner Rob Walker – opened the fête.

The current street market and fair was started in 1975 by members of the Nunney Community Association. Now it attracts up to 10,000 visitors from across the southwest of England, and stallholders from as far away as Yorkshire.

Nunney Fayre secretary Jeremy Gaunt said, “This year’s special anniversary is an appropriate time to remember all the contributions made by villagers past and present who have made Nunney Fayre such a success. They are too many to be named individually, but my thanks go to them all.”

Nunney Street Market & Fayre has over 120 stalls this year and will be officially opened at 10.00am by newly-elected local MP David Warburton.

Nunney Fayre is organised by Jeremy Gaunt on behalf of the Nunney Community Association. Whereas similar events have large committees, Jeremy prefers to work alone.

The event has become so successful in recent years that he has been asked to advise other village fêtes. Horningsham Village Fair almost tripled its visitor numbers last month by following Nunney’s success formula.

Jeremy said, “The secret is to capitalise on whatever makes your event unique – in Nunney’s case obviously the unique setting around a moated castle – and to build on what you have. A lot of people like things the way they always have been. Rather than to make radical changes, you keep everything you have and add new stalls and attractions to it.”

As well as over 120 stalls selling a wide variety of goods –  from bric-a-brac and plants to handmade gifts and garden furniture – Nunney Street Market & Fayre offers lots of food and drink for all tastes and budgets. Live music in front of the castle includes the Frome Swing Band and French folk group the Mominettes.

The roving bands were a huge hit last year, so Honk Monster and the Frome Street Bandits will be touring the fair again. Magic shows for children, the Bathampton Morris Men and woodland crafts demonstrations ensure a great day out for the whole family.

Nunney Street Market and Fayre is open from 10.00am until 5.00pm on Saturday 1st August. The George at Nunney will host a barbecue and more live music from the Mominettes in its walled garden from 5.30pm.

Entry to Nunney Street Market and Fayre is free. Parking costs £5 per vehicle, which is spent on insurance, music, marketing, licenses and other necessities for putting on an event. Disabled parking is available at Nunney village hall.

Full details for Nunney Street Market & Fayre are available at www.visitnunney.com.

 

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