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The 2016 Goose Fayre AGM took place on Friday 26th of February. The meeting elected Tim Wheeler as Chairman Tel 01297551079 Email tfwheeler1@sky.com and Liz Thomas as secretary - Email ejthomas@btinternet.com
The 2016 Fayre will be held on Saturday 24th September.

Pictures of the 2016 Fayre can be found at the bottom of this page


The Colyford Goose Fayre was revived in 1980 under the leadership of Colin Pady and has been held every year since then on the Saturday closest to Michaelmas.

In the early days the fayre was held in the grounds of the Old Manor Hotel but when that site was developed the fayre moved to the present site of Springfields, on the Seaton Road, thanks to the kindness of the Dupee and later the Pountney families.

A large number of villagers and friends dress in medieval costume and form a procession starting at the Elms. This colourful procession of many hundreds of people follow the Mayor of Colyford and his lady down to Springfield to the accompaniment of much music and jollity from the Mummers and the many providers of medieval music.

The fayre always tries to maintain it's medieval setting. Goods are sold under tents and various produce is available - honey, pancakes, ram-roast, pottery, leather - and of course beer, tea and cakes. Numerous medieval style skills are on show with metalwork, bodging, thatching and archery as well as childrens entertainment in the quintain and the greasy pole.

Among the entertainers there are mummers, strolling players, dancers and, the highlight of the afternoon, the mummers play. Local residents perform this play, written and produced by Jean Wakefield, in a light-hearted and humorous manner and it is always very well received by the locals. The afternoon always finishes with an auction of geese. Lately this has become a mock auction as over the years it was found that many people were not keen on obtaining a live goose, which obviously entailed killing, plucking and drawing before it could be enjoyed at the table.

The fayre has become a major feature in the local area and several thousand people attend every year. Any profits from the fayre are used for the village and some local organisations also benefit. From the outset it was decided that the aim of holding the fayre was not to make unwarranted profit but to hope to gain enough to stage another fayre in the following year, for the benefit of all the local people. Geoff Marshall


Tim Wheeler (Goosefayre Chairman) Presenting a Cheque for £350 from funds raised by the Goosefayre, to the Colyton, Colyford and District Memory Cafe in April 2016.


Campaign for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE) "Our Outdoors Competition 2016"

The Goosefayre has won First Place in Category 3 of this Competition. The Formal Presentation was made in the Memorial Hall on 15th December when Tim Wheeler and Colin Pady were presented with a Plaque and Certificate, with a cheque for £200 to follow.
Here is a copy of the CPRE report:-

ENTRANT: Colyford Goose Fayre

Category 3:'Our Outdoors' a special sustainable place in the community

REPORT (Initial Visit)

Colyford is situated on the main A3052 Exeter to Lyme Regis road and suffers accordingly from fast
moving traffic. There is no discernible public parking place resulting in a plethora of privately
errected no parking signs, even the Memorial Hall discourages parking unless attending a hall
function. The two public houses do have car parks for their patrons. A single sign on the A3052
indicates there is parking for those utilising the tram, presumably it would be unsafe to sign post this
in the other direction as traffic would have to turn right into a narrow lane in the face of oncoming
traffic. Regrettably these factors do not make the village appear particularly welcoming to
motorists, but at the time of judging both public houses were well attended suggesting a
considerable degree of popularity.

The village is accessible by tram cycle path or on foot and is convenient for exploration from Seaton.
The adjacent wetland nature reserve is a well known haunt of various wildfowl and other species.
There is also a pretty blue bell wood and the area is complimentary to the Jurassic Coast providing a
differing aspect on our natural environment.

The Goose Fayre takes place at the end of September by which time the "Our Outdoors"
Competition judging is over (ceasing on the 31st August). There was no evidence of wide scale publicity
for the event at the time of the visit and without attending the Fayre itself it would be unfair to
make a judgement.

Clearly from the photographs on the Colyfdord Village website this is a popular,colourful and
successful event involving a lot of planning and embracing the local community. Consequently it
could meet the competition category requirements of a special sustainable place in the community.



SECOND VISIT

To make an informed judgement we decided to visit the actual Goose Fair on 24th September 2016.
We arrived on foot after riding from Seaton on the tram. The event was publicised at the Seaton
Terminus and the site was visible from the tram.

The village had a traffic management system in place and free parking for the fair was available
through an arrangement with the Fair Committee ande local landowners. An informative programme
was on sale at various points in the villge by vendors in appropriate costume, which helped set the
scene.

A procession was scheduled for 2.00pm and commenced on time with Morris Dancers and various
groups of local people and children dressed colourfully and in period. There was clear support from
the local community as well as visitors from far and wide.

Entrance to the "fairground" was by programme either by foot behind the procession or by car at a separate entrance.

The fair itself was well laid out with plenty of events, activities and a variety of refreshments and
food ranging from a spit roasted lamb to elderflower champagne. Children were well catered for
with archery, quintain, coco-nut shy, greasy pole and much more.

Throughout the fair were strolling mummers, musicians and story tellers. Enquiry revealed that
around 2,500 was the expected attendance and that the car park was certainly full with a lot of people
arriving on foot.

Many of the stalls were selling goods and produce with proceeds going towards the fair with the aim
of all profits being ploughed back into organising the next year's event. The fair was re-instated in
the 1980's and judging by the number of colourful tents, marquees and stall coverings all in keeping
with the event a lot of thought, time and effort had been put in by the organisers.
There was clear evidence of sustainability and community spirit. Every effort had been made to
ensure that recycle bins were in place, there were adequate toilets and the area was big
enough to accomodate emergency service vehicles if needed with a clear entry and exit strategy.

We thought that a little more temporary bunting might have been on display in the village itself to add to
the colour and some evidence of the fact that the event had been entered into the CPRE
competition would have been on display.

On balance however we considered that this was a well organised, popular, fun and well attended event.

The only judging drawback was that the competition should have closed before the event began, but
special dispensation was granted as it was an annually dated event.

We enjoyed the fair which was scheduled between 2pm and 5pm and accomodated the time of
the last tram back to Seaton at 5.40pm.

We consider that the Colyford Goose Fayre meets the necessary criteria to become a winning entry in the
category entered.

Goose Fayre scenes 2016

Click on the thumbnails below for a larger picture

The Procession

Numerous Costumes

Lots of Activities.

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