'Terrible blow' - King's Lynn Mart 2021 cancelled

The colourful spectical of the King's Lynn Mart at night view from a roof top on the Tuesday Market

The colourful spectical of the King's Lynn Mart at night view from a roof top on the Tuesday Market Place. Picture: Matthew Usher. - Credit: Matthew Usher

Organisers of the King's Lynn Mart, which marked its 816th opening in 2020, have said it will not be allowed to go ahead this year.

The Mart, which was granted a Royal charter by King Henry VIII in 1537, usually attracts thousand of people to the town's Tuesday Market Place in February.

But West Norfolk Council and the Showmen's Guild announced that would not be the case in 2021 under the current Covid-19 regulations.

The King's Lynn Mart 2016 at night. Picture: Matthew Usher.

The Lynn Mart will not be able to go ahead this year. - Credit: Matthew Usher

Charles Barwick, chairman of the Norwich and Eastern Counties section of the Showmen's Guild, said: "This is a terrible blow for all our operators, not only because of the impact on their livelihood, but also because the Mart represents the start of our season before operators head off to different parts of the country.

"It has always been a significant and colourful occasion, supported by the local community, with the great and good going on the rides for the opening, and then our children's days, and special day for children with additional needs.

"We are gutted that we won't be their to provide some colour and entertainment to the people of King's Lynn and west Norfolk, but hopefully, when things return to some sort of normality, we will return next year."

The Mart is being set up on the Tuesday Market Place in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt

The Lynn Mart will not be able to go ahead this year. - Credit: Ian Burt



Elizabeth Nockolds, cabinet member for culture, heritage and health for West Norfolk Council, said she was saddened that it could not take place this year and thanked the showmen for taking the health of people into consideration.


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She said: "For over 800 years the Mart has been a key event in the west Norfolk calendar, something that many residents look forward to each year. 

"It is part of the tradition of King's Lynn, which marks the end of winter and the move into spring.

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"It brings with it a riot of colours and sounds, and brings the Tuesday Market Place to life.

"I know it will be missed by many. 

"We look forward to discussing with them, their plans for next year's Mart and hope to be able to welcome them back to the Tuesday Market Place in February 2022."


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