Questions raised over future of Holkham Country Fair
PUBLISHED: 18:28 22 April 2020 | UPDATED: 18:28 22 April 2020
ARCHANT EASTERN DAILY PRESS (01603) 772434
One of the most eagerly awaited events in Norfolk’s social calendar has been cancelled, and questions raised over its future.
Organisers of Holkham Country Fair, which sees around 40,000 visitors, have released a statement confirming 2019’s fair was the last under the current arrangement.
Celia Deeley, Holkham enterprises manager, said: “As an estate, we have greatly enjoyed hosting the Holkham Country Fair over the last 42 years, and during that time thousands of visitors have relished the entertaining day out it provided.
“However, recent years have shown that we can no longer continue with the country fair in its current format, and so after much contemplation we have agreed not to renew our working arrangement with the organiser for 2021.”
The two-day fair is well known in the Norfolk events calendar for its high-octane entertainment in the grand ring, hundreds of trade stands, a food village and a cookery demonstration theatre showcasing local Norfolk talents.
Our pictures from the first Holkham Country Show, in 1977, show large crowds filling the Holkham Estate’s stunning grounds.
The fair was established that year by the 7th Earl of Leicester, Edward Coke, with the aim of inspiring a passion for country life in children.
It was four years after he had inherited the Holkham Estate.
Country Fair organiser Sarah Green said: “I know that many of you will be as sad as we are to see the end of this wonderful traditional event.
“We would like to thank all those who visited, contributed and enjoyed attending Holkham Country Fair over its many years.”
Performers over the years included the Household Cavalry, Atkinson Action Horses, aerobatics from Steve Carver and the world famous Royal Air Force Red Arrows.
A spokesperson for Holkham Country Fair said: “There will certainly be disappointment at this news, however Holkham would like to take this opportunity to assure visitors that a programme of exciting and engaging events will be on the what’s on calendar for 2021.
“As always, rural pursuits, country life, wildlife and conservation will continue to play an important role in this offering.”
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