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Major celebration of Barnstaple’s Fair heritage gets under way next week

PUBLISHED: 11:05 12 July 2016

A vintage steam locomotive road run through the centre of Barnstaple is one of a number of events being planned to celebrate 50 years of Barnstaple Fair this summer. Picture: Contributed

A vintage steam locomotive road run through the centre of Barnstaple is one of a number of events being planned to celebrate 50 years of Barnstaple Fair this summer. Picture: Contributed

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New museum exhibition will kick-start summer of fairground nostalgia in town

A vintage steam locomotive road run through the centre of Barnstaple is one of a number of events being planned to celebrate 50 years of Barnstaple Fair this summer. Picture: Contributed A vintage steam locomotive road run through the centre of Barnstaple is one of a number of events being planned to celebrate 50 years of Barnstaple Fair this summer. Picture: Contributed

A major exhibition celebrating 50 years of Barnstaple Fair starts at the Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon next week.

The ‘All the Fun of the Fair’ event opens at 10am Saturday, July 23 and runs throughout the summer until the end of fair week on September 24.

It will feature fairground memorabilia and pictures, as well as the chance to listen to oral history recordings of local people talking about their memories of the fair.

Barnstaple Fair Heritage Society received £9,700 of Lottery funding in February to run the exhibition, as well as a number of other events including a vintage steam locomotive road run through the town centre at noon on September 13.

There will also be a carnival queen reunion at the museum on September 15; a model fairground show from September 12-17; and carnival workshops for children every Wednesday throughout the school holidays.

On September 12, local schools and North Devon Sinfonia will be performing a tribute to Barnstaple Fair by Nigel Brooks at the Queen’s Theatre, from 7pm.

Also on September 15, fairground historian Martin Burridge will launch his new book about the fair.

There will be a vintage fair on the Square from September 13–17 by special arrangement with the Showmen’s Guild.

Carnival queens from throughout the fair’s history will also be reuniting to compare their carnival reigns. The fair itself will be held at the Seven Brethren fairground site from September 14 to 17, with the carnival on September 17.

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