Opinion: Birstall Chamber of Trade’s Anne Thompson on the village’s summer fair success

ENJOYABLE DAY Pam Rae with Carl Wilde and town crier Laurie Gilbert.
ENJOYABLE DAY Pam Rae with Carl Wilde and town crier Laurie Gilbert.

I have to start this week by saying THANK YOU. Thank you to all of you who came to the summer fair and made it such an enjoyable day, despite the gale force winds and less than balmy temperatures. With your support we’ve raised more than £500 for our chosen charities. Lists of the competition and prize draw winners can be found around the village.

Thank you to all the businesses in Birstall who got into the spirit of the occasion, to everyone who took part in the baking and flower arranging competitions, and to our judges Steve Bishop and Carl Wilde. Thank you to Batley Bulldogs and Total Sports Foundation, all the staff at the Library, and the Town Crier Laurie Gilbert too.

Thank you to all our volunteers on the day. They sold programmes, painted faces, painted finger nails, put up the gazebo and saved the day from disaster. And to everyone who donated gifts and prizes.

Thank you to David and Pam at the Oakwell Motel for their generous hospitality in hosting the baking and flower arranging competitions, and decorating the rooms so spectacularly.

Particular thanks must go to the small band of Merry Men who planned and organised the event: Jill at the Fashion Workroom, Alan Walker, Nichola at Bishops, Anjie at the Pet Shop, Elaine at Woody’s Preserves, Pat at High Ridings Travel, Dave and Andy at The Cobbles and Vina Ranhawa at Kirklees.

It’s relatively easy to put a few quid in a box, and we’re extremely grateful that you did – but often the most precious gift you can give is your free time, which these people have given in spades.

There won’t be much time for them to rest though, as planning is now underway for the rest of the year’s events!

Events such as this, done on a shoestring and by people who are willing to give their time, talent and expertise are what communities are all about, and Birstall is extremely fortunate in having so many people who care and try to make a difference.

The coming months will see some potentially serious threats to our community if plans to close the library, market and children’s centre go ahead. So if you’re proud of Birstall, I’d like to take this opportunity to ask all of you to try to make a difference.

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