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It's family and dogs first for popular spring country fair

PUBLISHED: 08:00 01 March 2019

Visitors and their four-legged friends enjoying the  Game and Country Fair at Euston Estate  Picture: Contributed

Visitors and their four-legged friends enjoying the Game and Country Fair at Euston Estate Picture: Contributed

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A showcase of all that's best in East Anglian country pursuits returns to the Norfolk-Suffolk border at the end of next month - and the events and outdoor activities are focused firmly on the family: adults, children and the dog.

There's somethng for everyone at the Game and Country Fair  Picture: ContributedThere's somethng for everyone at the Game and Country Fair Picture: Contributed

We’re blessed in East Anglia with a wealth of options for days out with the family – including the important four-legged members, dogs.

Whether it’s activities specifically for children, children and adults, outdoor or indoor, Norfolk and Suffolk have the answer.

With the counties’ varied terrain (Noel Coward, who famously described Norfolk as “very flat”, clearly never rode a bike around here), encompassing beaches, cliffs, some hills, forests, heathland and the unique Broads National Park, the opportunities for outdoor activities are endless.

Add in the fact that we enjoy here the lowest rainfall in the country, and the offering becomes even more persuasive.

The Silver Stars Army Parachute Display Team will return to headline the Game and Country Fair this year  Picture: ContributedThe Silver Stars Army Parachute Display Team will return to headline the Game and Country Fair this year Picture: Contributed

Spring and summer fairs and festivals, meanwhile, are a local speciality. From the mid-summer spectaculars of the Royal Norfolk and Suffolk shows to the humble village fete, East Anglians like to get outdoors when the days get longer and the temperature goes up.

A popular event in the region’s calendar is the annual East Anglian Game and Country Fair, held on the Euston Estate, near Thetford, on the Norfolk-Suffolk border as spring gets under way.

Every year, world class events and attractions are a feature of the show, which is a magnet for families, being child and dog-friendly with something for each family member.

Very much a have-a-go event, the East Anglian Game and Country Fair, held this year on Saturday and Sunday, April 27-28, offers the chance to try a range of country activities such as clay shooting including a 40-bird competition for men, women and juniors, fly and coarse fishing, ferret racing, archery, paintballing and crossbows.

Ye Olde Redtail Falconry Display will Ye Olde Redtail Falconry Display will bring their ancient art to the main arena  Picture: ContributedYe Olde Redtail Falconry Display will Ye Olde Redtail Falconry Display will bring their ancient art to the main arena Picture: Contributed

There’s also an air rifle range, the opportunity to hold a bird of prey, enter your dog into the pet dog show, join in with your dog at the K9 Aqua Sports pool or gun dog scurry competitions – and take a ride in a Land Rover on the exciting off-road 4x4 course. This year the Little Rovers are back with a supervised mini off-road course for adventurous youngsters who will be able to drive a scaled-down Land Rover.

Children of all ages will also be able to meet several animals, including alpacas and enjoy donkey rides.

There are also ample opportunities for shoppers with more than 350 trade stands and craft and gift marquees, plus the chance to refuel in the food hall and at pop-up food stalls around the site. There will also be the chance to see how the professionals do it in the fair’s country kitchen with a series of cookery workshops and demonstrations.

Headlining the event this year is the Silver Stars Army Parachute Display Team, who will land in the drop zone in the main arena against the awesome backdrop of Euston Hall.

There's plenty to entertain children at the Game and Country Fair  Picture: ContributedThere's plenty to entertain children at the Game and Country Fair Picture: Contributed

Back by popular demand are the UK Horseboarding Team UK, the British Scurry and Trials Driving Championships and Harvey’s Heavy Horses.

Other main arena events include Ye Olde Redtail Falconry Display, who bring their ancient art into the modern age with a thrilling display guaranteed to enthral audiences of all ages.

New to the Forestry arena, the Thomas Carving Timber Show will demonstrate how lumberjacks ply their trade and the fun they have doing it – a unique show.

Spectators can watch log rolling in a tank of water as competitors try to stay dry and upright on the log, speed carving, a 15ft gas cannon, axe throwing and abseiling.

Enter your dog into the pet dog show at the Game and Country Fair  Picture: ContributedEnter your dog into the pet dog show at the Game and Country Fair Picture: Contributed

There’ll also be the chance to see competitors climb the highest poles ever seen at the East Anglian Game and Country Fair, with interactive workshop sessions for children inbetween performances.

Another newcomer to the 2019 Forestry Arena is one of Europe’s leading BMX stunt teams, Mobile Bike Events, who arrive with a selection of the world’s best riders performing jaw-dropping stunts –backflips guaranteed!

To save up to 25pc on ticket prices, visit www.ukgamefair.co.uk or call 01263 735828 for more information.

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