Traditional event will take Otley visitors back in time

Wharfedale Observer: Members of the Otley Victorian Fayre committee, from left, Stephanie Lee, Zoe Pickburn, Rachelle Atkin, John Whitehead, Ann Whitehead, Evelyn Leeming and Vanessa James Members of the Otley Victorian Fayre committee, from left, Stephanie Lee, Zoe Pickburn, Rachelle Atkin, John Whitehead, Ann Whitehead, Evelyn Leeming and Vanessa James

“More stalls than ever” are being promised for the 28th Otley Victorian Fayre.

This year’s fayre runs from noon to 6pm on Sunday, December 8, when the market town will be buzzing with traditional attractions designed to enflame the Christmas spirit.

Many thousands of visitors are expected to head to Otley to enjoy everything from donkey rides and reindeer to performances by fire artists, choirs and brass bands.

Traditional fairground rides, Punch and Judy shows and street organs will further enhance the impression that the town has travelled back in time – as will the many stallholders, publicans and shopkeepers donning Victorian dress.

As always, the stalls will be selling all kinds of tasty fare – including roast chestnuts, mulled wine and a hog roast – to help keep people warm as they take it all in.

Fayre committee chairman Steph Lee said: “We hope lots of people will come and join us, enjoy themselves and kick-start their Christmas celebrations.

“They will be able to eat wonderful, high quality street food and discover the many cafes, shops and pubs that our town has to offer.

“They can also take a stroll around our many courtyards and alleys to discover our brightly decorated shops and pubs.”

Carols from local school and adult choirs will provide a suitably festive backdrop to the occasion, and other attractions will include mummers, Morris Dancers and bellringers.

The fayre programme is available from local shops now and will be sold by Army Cadets on the day, for £1, which includes free entry into a prize draw, a map and full schedule.

Started in 1985 by Otley Chamber of Trade, the fayre has, for many years, been run by a committed team of volunteers as a not-for-profit venture that helps local charities and community organisations.

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