exdartmoor@gmail.com
Tel: 01364621466
HomeNewsletterSitemap
Print-friendly version

Widecombe Fair

Date start: 11 Sep 2012
Date end: 11 Sep 2012
Organiser's website: http://www.widecombefair.com
Venue: Widecombe Fair Ground
Address: Widecombe in the Moor
Town: Widecombe in the Moor
Description

Widecombe Fair

Widecombe Fair - Tuesday 11th September 2012 - 9am till late.

First held in the 1850's, Widecombe Fair takes place annually on the second Tuesday in September.
It's an all-day affair so come early and stay 'til late!

This is real Dartmoor country fare. Something for everyone, especially children. The main events of the day are held on the fairfield but there are also many other things to see and do around the village.

To find Accommodation for the fair or Dartmoor review the categories on this web site, beware its a busy time book early.

Entry
FREE ENTRY to the Fair Field and Village
Gates open to the public at 9.00 am
The Fair continues into the evening - events continue until approximately 7.00pm with the beer tent and music until late.


Parking
In 2011 we changed the parking system to incorporate a FREE park and ride from the main car parks. The single parking charge allows FREE entry into every part of the Fair and saves money for all multi occupancy cars – so be green - bring a friend!

2012 sees the system continue with some minor changes. In simple terms, car parking is provided next to the Fair Field for the disabled (P1), 4 x 4s use the car park on Southcombe Hill (P2) and most cars will use the main car park at Holwell (P3). There will be adjustments during the day depending on traffic and to minimise any congestion. All you need to do is follow the signs which are posted on every approach route and at key junctions staff will be present to help you. The Park and Ride operates from car park P3. (Other car parks shown on the map will be held in reserve & are not normally accessible).
Remember - JUST FOLLOW THE SIGNS!

Parking Charges: (includes free Park and Ride where appropriate)
Cars : £15 per car
Go Green - We are offering a discounted price of £10 for single occupancy cars but we would prefer you to fill your cars with family and friends - at £15 for a car, driver and up to six passengers it is a big saving to you and helps the environment by reducing pollution and congestion. Note: Park and Ride transport is only available to those passengers recorded on the car parking ticket. If you have more than six passengers the minibus charge applies.
Minibus : £20
Motor cycles : £5
Coaches : £15
(No other fees to pay - FREE ENTRY to the Fair Field and Village for all)
The Last Park and Ride Bus leaves at 7.00pm
but by then village parking is accessible if you want to stay on at the Fair.


The History of the fair.....

In the Woolman’s Exeter and Plymouth Gazette dated Saturday, October 19th, 1850, it was announced that on the following Friday a Free Fair would be held on the Green adjoining the Church Yard at Widecombe-in-the-Moor. There would be a large show of cattle and quantity of Moorland sheep offered for sale.

On Saturday, November 2nd, 1850, the Gazette reported that "A cattle fair was held at Widecombe-in-the-Moor for the first time on Tuesday last." It was also reported that there was a large attendance of yeomen and gentlemen of the district and good business was done. It was thought that the fair should be permanently established. 736 sheep were penned, 75 score and 7 fatted beasts plus 4 bulls. One South Devon cow, reared by the vicar, Rev J.H. Mason, was sold for £15.10s. About 50 ponies were driven in, the breed and character of the Widecombe stock being highly appreciated. It was intended to fix the future date not to clash with any other neighbouring fair. It was agreed that Widecombe was fortunate to have a Green that was an ideal site, also that it could have a Free Fair.

The vicar, well known for his hospitality, held a large dinner party and celebrated the fair in "Fine Old English Style." Mr John Germon of Moreton presided and it is said that the guests left "brimful of enjoyment."

From the Parish Register we find that the guests included:

John Tozer of Solomon Tozer, Agent for the Rev T Fry
Lord of the Manor of Widecombe
Thomas Escott Cresswell
John Germon, Moretonhampstead, Chairman
James Woodlet, Halsanger - bought 34 sheep
John Sparke Amay (Amery), Druid, Ashburton
William White, Solicitor, Moretonhampstead
Wm A Cockley Solicitor, Ashburton
H C Creagh, Surveyor, Ashburton
Robt Nosworthy, Ford, Manaton
Henry Hals, Scagell, Farmer
John May, Yeoman, Moretonhampstead
W.B. Germon, Yeoman, Moreton
John Pearse, Butcher, Ashburton
John Coaker, Yeoman, Bellaford
The song used for the now famous Widecombe Fair can be traced long before 1850. The words and tune varied according to the part of the country, but always had the same theme of Tom Pearse and Tom Cobley.

By 1890 when the Rev. Baring Gould published it in his "Songs of the West" it had become known in its present form.

The original Thomas Cobley is thought to have died in Spreyton in 1794. His great nephew, a Thomas Cobley of Butsford in the Parish of Colebrook died in 1844 aged 82 years and is buried in Spreyton just outside the South door of the Church.

Back to Top

Charities Supported
MONEY RAISED BY WIDECOMBE FAIR COMMITTEE IS GIVEN TO NATIONAL, REGIONAL, AND LOCAL CHARITIES. RECENT DONATIONS HAVE BEEN MADE TO:

ST. JOHN AMBULANCE

HEARING DOGS FOR THE DEAF

GUIDE DOGS FOR THE BLIND

ROYAL NATIONAL LIFEBOAT INSTITUTE

INJURED JOCKEYS CLUB

LEUSDON CHURCH

HOSPICE SOUTHWEST

THE RIVER RAPID YOUTH THEATRE

ASHBURTON LEAGUE OF MENDS

MACMILLAN NURSES

WONFORD HOSPITAL (EXETER)

THE ROYAI, BRITISH LEGION

DEVON AIR AMBULANCE

CITIZEN ADVICE BUREAU

ROWCROFT

PRINCETOWN SCHOOL

HUCCABY CIIURCH

CHURCH HOUSE, WIDECOMBE

THE SCOUTS

CHICKS (Country Holidays for Inner City Kids)

WIDECOMBE SCHOOL

THE ENGLAND TUG'O'WAR TEAM REPRESENTATIVES

LEUSDON MEMORIAL HALL

MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS SOCIETY

PARISH LINK

WIDECOMBE CHURCH TOWER APPEAL

WIDECOMBE PLAY GROUP

MENCAP

SENSE

THE COMMITTEE WELCOMES APPLICATIONS FROM LOCAL ORGANISATIONS IN THE WIDECOMBE PARISH WHO WISH TO OPERATE THEIR OWN STALLS OR OFFER RURAL ACTIVITIES WHICH ARE IN KEEPING WITH THE AGRICULTURAL THEME OF THE FAIR

Holiday cottages Dartmoor South Devon