Gun smoke on the mean streets of Ilfracombe...

Members of the Boots and Saddles Club as the Earp brothers unloading some lead on the notorious Clan

Members of the Boots and Saddles Club as the Earp brothers unloading some lead on the notorious Clanton gang in a re-enactment of the gunfight at the OK Corral. - Credit: Archant

A rootin’ tootin’ and shootin’ good time as the cowboys return for Ilfracombe Victorian week on June 11.

Members of the Boots and Saddles Club as the Earp brothers unloading some lead on the notorious Clan

Members of the Boots and Saddles Club as the Earp brothers unloading some lead on the notorious Clanton gang in a re-enactment of the gunfight at the OK Corral. - Credit: Archant

MEAN gun totin’ desperadoes will be taking to the streets of Ilfracombe on Tuesday, June 11 as the ‘American Victorians’ come to town.

Members of the Boots and Saddles Club as the Earp brothers unloading some lead on the notorious Clan

Members of the Boots and Saddles Club as the Earp brothers unloading some lead on the notorious Clanton gang in a re-enactment of the gunfight at the OK Corral. - Credit: Archant

Pursued by the long arm of the law, they will be ‘holding up’ premises around the town and it could all be decided by the fastest shootin’ iron…

It is of course one of the many events taking place as part of the annual Victorian Celebration week, which kicks off on Saturday, June 8 with the traditional sight of Queen Victoria, the High Street parade and Trinity Fair.

The new western element to the festivities proved a big hit last year and this year living history group the Boots and Saddles Club will be blazing a trail into town.


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Organisers are keen to hear from any businesses or public premises in the town that would like to be raided by the outlaws, with Wyatt Earp and his boys hot in pursuit. Plus as many people as possible are invited to don wild west costumes.

“We’d like as many people as possible to know the cowboys are coming to town,” said Victorian Committee chairman Carol Slinn.

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“Because even more shopkeepers seem keen on having their premises raided, we will be going along the High Street and Church Street areas in the morning and then from 2pm along the seafront, St James Place and the Quay, or indeed anywhere else that wishes to take part.

“But we do suggest that dog owners keep their pets away from those areas during that time as there will be some mock gunfire.”

To round off the day there will be a Buffalo Bill Evening at the Bowling Club in Highfield Road from 7.30pm. Tickets must be bought in advance and full details can be found in the Victorian Celebrations 2013 programme now available at numerous outlets around the town.

Dave Rouse, aka ‘Wyatt Earp’ of the Boots and Saddles Club told the Gazette:

“We felt so welcome last year that all our members who came said they wanted to do it again, and to hold up a real bank - how often do we get the chance to do that and get away with it?”

“We were made so welcome last year at the country and western night it was hard to pull ourselves away, so you can tell your town the Boots and Saddles are coming!”

* If you would like to be ‘raided’ on June 11, call Carol Slinn on 01271 862378.

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