After a break of three years due to Covid-19, the Fayre Committee were rewarded for their many hours of planning and effort with a fine day that brought out over 2,000 visitors to Thurlow. The fayre certainly gave everyone value for money with admission prices kept the same as 2016 and showcased a quintessential large village fete.
The entertainment in the Show Ring got underway with a display of Thurlow Hounds who, with kind permission of Robin Vestey, were visiting the Fayre for the first time. It proved to be a masterstroke, and thanks go to Elliott Stokes and his team for engaging with the crowd and allowing children to go and meet the hounds close up.
The return of the popular Dangerous Steve with his thrill-a-minute act of sensational stunts again did not disappoint, followed by Let’s Go Alpacas and Gemma’s Farm Sheep Racing, meant there was something going on in the ring all afternoon to keep the crowd interested.
In addition, there were also performances from Lisa Mason School of Dance and also local villager Kelly Mepham (who kindly stepped in at the last minute in the absence of Laura Bacon and her puppet Mavis the Suffolk Fox) and sang a rendition of three songs to end the afternoon.
Outside of the Show Ring there were performances from Markhele Magic Show who kept the crowd spellbound and also Hadstock Silver Band. The Fun Dog Show had a record number of entries for the nine classes, and was very ably run by Jane Sheppard and Jenny Kilby from the village. The Classic Cars were re-located on top bank near the hedge, as there were three large military vehicles as part of the display. Although some were disappointed there was no Car Boot, Dawn Abbey ensured there were some 40 Craft & Food stalls for visitors to peruse through which also included supporting some charity stalls.
The ladies in the W.I. Tea Tent were incredibly busy throughout the day and sold all the cakes they made. All the catering outlets were well patronised and John Byers of Thurlow Cock reported his best day takings.
The Show Tents assembled by a team made up of committee members and other helpers from the village saw The Pass Family win the Archer Shield for most points scored in the Produce Show, Mandy Whitlock the Margaret Ince Cup for best cheese scones and Robin Vestey presented with the Susan Loveday Best in Show trophy for his resplendent four roses.
The Bottle Stall again raised nearly £1,000 and thanks to all those from the village who kindly donated bottles.
The Raffle again turned out to be a major fundraiser, with £1,264 worth of tickets sold. The incentive of a Golden Ticket prize of a luxury weekend break for two added to the excitement, with the lucky winner being Lorraine Quilton who also had a Craft Stall. There was also a display of names and photos collated by Alan Bumpstead and other members of Haverhill History Group as part of the Thurlow History Display to recognise 80 years of Thurlow Estate (1942-2022). In addition some items associated with Wootten Brewery (1874-1910) sited at rear of former Rose & Crown pub were also on display.
The Fayre Committee would like to thank everyone who contributed for their support, which made the day such a successful event. Whether it was helping with set up, manning on day, donating bottles, buying raffle tickets, making cakes, it all adds up. And thanks also to the generosity of sponsors, including Laragh Homes (who are involved in Goldings Farm development), without whom the admission price would have increased. The combined efforts resulted in a profit of over £8,000 which will be distributed as follows:
Gt Thurlow PCC: £1,000 Lt Thurlow PCC: £1,000 Thurlow Village Hall: £1,000 Thurlow W.I.: £1,000 Thurlow Sports Club: £1,000 Thurlow Tennis Club: £1,000 Thurlow Tiddly Tots: £500 Thurlow Youth FC: £500 Thurlow Village Link: £200 Addenbrookes Charitable Trust: £200 East Anglian Air Ambulance: £200 Arthur Rank Hospice: £200 St Nicholas Hospice Care: £200
It takes a lot of planning to ensure everything runs smoothly on the day and the first committee meeting for Thurlow Fayre 2023 (which is scheduled for Sunday 3rd September) will be held on Thursday 24th November 7.00pm at Thurlow Cock. Anyone who might be interested in joining the committee with fresh ideas is welcome to come along and be part of the team or go to www.thurlowfayre.org to register an interest. Thurlow Fayre Committee