Thursday, 3 October 2013

Bridgwater's Historic Charter Fair

Last Friday evening me and Andrew, plus associated parents and my brother all trundled down to Bridgwater Fair. Although the trip didn't end quite how we planned (see here for why!) most of the evening was great fun, even if we did have to squeeze through the billions of people who'd decided to go to the fair.
 
Bridgwater Fair
 
 
Bridgwater Fair is held annually on the town's St Matthews Field with the street leading up to the fair filled with market stalls, catering vans and fortune tellers selling all sorts of oddities, and all open til 10pm.
 
Bridgwater Fair Market

Bridgwater Fair Market Bridgwater Fair Market
 
 
The fair is a Charter Fair, which means that back in 1249 King John granted the town of Bridgwater the right to hold a fair every year on a certain date. Back then it would've consisted of things like a cattle market and games and entertainment.
 
Bridgwater Fair

Bridgwater Fair
 
Bridgwater Fair
 
 
It looks a bit different nowadays!
 For the four days its on, its the South West's largest funfair and is hosted by the Showmens Guild (Western Section) with modern and traditional fairground rides from lots of different fairground families.
 
Bridgwater Fair

Bridgwater Fair

Bridgwater Fair
 
Bridgwater Fair
 
 
There's lots of other Charter fairs around the UK; places like Nottingham Goose Fair, Kirkcaldy Links Market, Warwick Mop and Hull Fair and they're usually much bigger than your average travelling fair.
Google 'Charter Fair UK' and see if there's one near you!
 

4 comments:

  1. Ah like you mentioned your photographs took me back to visiting Hull Fair as a child! Like you said I remember Hull fair being HUGE, it went on for miles. It was fun through because my mum use to go as a child and it was great to hear her stories on how it had changed and such over the years. Always use to buy brandy snap - so so tasty and have a go at hook-a-duck!

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    Replies
    1. We always buy brandy snaps as well! Andrew loves them :-)
      Hull Fair is one I've never been to, must try and make it there someday :-) x

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  2. I've never heard of a Charter Fair before, I'm quite fascinated now. I think the helter skelter is stunning, absolutely my favourite thing there!!

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    Replies
    1. You're in the majority, lots of people have never heard of them! Pretty much every 'larger-than-normal' fair though has it's roots in a charter from the monarchy. :-) x

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Thank you very much for all your lovely comments; I do have every intention of replying but sometimes life with a baby gets in the way...

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