Fairground is still going strong after 700 years
As dusk descended in the heart of Crewkerne, funfair rides lit the Somerset streets which have been home to an ancient charter fair for more than 700 years.
St Bartholomew’s Street Fair was established by a Royal Charter which allows the main road, now the A30, to be closed so that stalls and entertainment can take place in the town centre.
The right to close the road can only be rescinded by Act of Parliament.
The fair has drawn visitors from far and wide from at least 1280, and a similar fair is thought to have been running when William the Conqueror’s civil servants made their Domesday survey.
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These days the fun lasts for two days with a Waltzer and other fairground rides bringing their raucous energy to the South Somerset town’s market square.
The fair is in new hands this year, having been passed on by the company which used to run it to a group of ‘younger citizens’ set up by Crewkerne District Rotary Club, partly to ensure that the fair did not fall into the hands of a commercial venture.
The funfair itself has been run by members of the Danter family for more than 60 years.