A faint reminder of Cardigan's rural Market Town past arrives in town this week. It's approaching November 10th - the annual Fair Day.
After 100+ years Studt's travelling fun fair still fetches up at the Fair Field car park. Conveniently located by the the Infant and Primary schools, for the last few days excitement has ramped up as new bits of mysterious kit arrive. Today dodgems, tarped, but not quite hidden, tomorrow who knows what?
An attraction for the children, and I assume teachers, is that it will be a whole day off school. Lord only knows what frenzy will be unleashed next year because Vernon Studt is bringing his fair rides into town for a two day ‘Big Weekend’ extravaganza from August 20th and 21st 2010.
This particular fair probably had it's roots in the November All Saints' Day Hiring Fair. And jolly good fun it seemed to be; carousing til the small hours and the prospect of work for the coming year! Preferable to the utter woefullness of the modern Job Seeking experience I'd have thought?
Indeed if this 1850-ish account is to be believed a Cardi could be educated too.
Saw a giantess, a Hottentot woman, a flaxen haired negro, two serpents, a crocodile, a sand sloth, a jackal, a muscovy cat, an American sea serpent, and a boa constrictor. I also saw a very fat woman and one who lifted 300 pounds by her hair.
Nothing remarkable about the last two (they can be seen still on most Saturday nights in Cardigan) but the rest must have been eye-poppingly exciting.
Anyway enough of my yakkin'...
Here are some photographs from 2007 when a little girl I know took her first ride at Cardigan Fair.
Ffair Aberteifi - Cardigan Fair
Aberteifi / Cardigan
Cardigan Annual Street Market and Funfair
Thanks to Gateway to Wales: History of Cardigan
by W.J. Lewis for the quoted material.