Fair Today Gone Tomorrow

Bridgwater Fair springs up along West Street
Bridgwater Fair springs up along West Street

It’s Fair time again. For all the fun and frolics of the next few days, there’s a backlog of preparation into making sure the event runs smoothly and a considerable amount of stuff for the residents of West Street to put up with to make it happen. And by Sunday it’ll all be over.

At the Multi-Agency Pre-Fair meeting on 4th September, all the agencies involved in making the Fair happen met at Sedgemoor Council Offices including residents representatives and ward councillors. The Fair covers two Town Wards -Westover, represented by Brian Smedley and Kathy Pearce and Wyndham represented by Gill Slocombe and Rachel Caswell. For County Council , Ann Bown covers the Wyndham patch while Leigh Redman the Westover one.

Rob Semple (SDC) is the new Mr Fair.
Rob Semple (SDC) is the new Mr Fair.

New Fair Boss

This year Sedgemoor’s Fair Supremo is Rob Semple. Today Rob took ward councillors on a walkabout as the Fair was being set up to ensure things were running smoothly and potential last minute problems could be identified.

For West street residents the main problem is the disruption to their daily lives, the noise,clutter and traffic generated by the Fair people, especially the difficulty of access to their homes and the parking. An extra problem with large crowd control is the need for an increased Police presence, the operation of first aid groups like St John’s Ambulance and the access for emergency services such as the Fire Brigade. Environmental Health, Trading standards, Animal Welfare were also on standby for potential problems.

Cllr Brian Smedley said “2014 was a successfully run Fair and set a high standard for Rob to live up to, but this also means that everything is  in place and the system is working and shown to work. The pre meeting identified concerns and the walkabout showed that they’d all been addressed to everyone’s satisfaction.”

Cllrs Caswell, Slocombe an Bown at the new road gate on Fairfield
Cllrs Caswell, Slocombe and Bown at the new road gate on Fairfield

New Road issues

The Fairfield itself is part of the Wyndham ward and  the new road to the Summerfields Housing Development has become a factor in the logistics for the Fair. A fence has been erected to seperate it from the main field events and access has been established  through a new gate. Cllr Gill Slocombe said “Wyndham ward councillors are satisfied that the correct precautions have been put in place  and hope that everyone has a safe and successful Fair”

Cllr Smedley added “One knock on factor of the loss of the extra field is that Fair lorries are now parking on the former Splash site. This year residents didn’t object to this, however, now we find that the vehicles have parked across the public right of way and have asked that this be addressed immediatly.”

The Fair opens on Wednesday 30th September and lasts for 4 nights.