Bank Holiday Monday just wouldn't be the same without the famous Bruton Packhorse Fair, eagerly anticipated by locals and visitors alike. Bruton Festival of Arts is delighted to announce an exciting and varied programme for this free-entry event on Monday 30 May from 10.30am till 6pm. Come and join in the fun with all the family!
As always there will be live music all day. The Wochynskis will kick off the show with their acoustic punk classics, followed by an incredible variety of bands including Captain Cactus & The Screaming Harlots, Fat Stanley, Loyd Grossman & the New Forbidden, Vodka Jellies, Holy Moly & The Crackers, The Activators and finally Sladest. The small acoustic stage will run from 2.30pm, featuring many local performers. The fun continues into the evening, with music at the after-party hosted by the Bruton Art Factory 6-9pm and at the Castle from 7pm (both free entry). And of course local restaurants will be open for business too.
This year's Packhorse Fair boasts a wider range of market stalls than ever, selling all manner of home and garden items and delicious food. The farmers' market will be laden with fresh produce ranging from cakes and breads to pickles, jams and sauces. We also welcome many traders to our craft and vintage section – a great place for vintage clothes, jewellery and unusual gifts – and maybe a hidden treasure or two on the bric-a-brac stalls. And to keep your energy levels up throughout the day there will be a huge selection of food and drink on offer – everything from falafel to hog roast, from Pimms to real ale and Bullbeggar cider. An eclectic and enticing menu is promised!
This is very much a family event with loads for the kids to do. Usual favourites include circus skills, an obstacle course, vintage fairground rides, hair braiding and face painting. This year there will also be a working craft area by the stepping stones. Here you can try your hand at making masks, sculpting with clay, glazing a pot in the Raku style, cutting a coin, or learning to knit and crochet. We also welcome the return of 'Birdman' Alan and his fabulous birds of prey.
The Bruton Dog Show kicks off at midday (with the arena open for entries at 11am); full details available from www.brutonvets.co.uk or www.packhorsefair.co.uk. And of course not to be missed is the now legendary Bruton Drag Race (3pm), in which our gorgeous 'gals' will be raising funds to keep our 'Man on a Bench' sculpture, currently on loan from the artist, Giles Penny. Sponsorship forms are available from www.packhorsefair.co.uk as well as from the Green Monkey, the Sun Inn and the Bruton Castle.
St Mary's Church will be open all day. Drop in to see the Bruton Flower Club's amazing display, join in a singing workshop, climb the west tower for a fantastic aerial view of the town, or simply absorb the centuries-old atmosphere.
Advance warning for budding poets – two days before the Fair, Bruton Festival of Arts presents a NEW Poetry Competition compered by Frome performance poet Liv Torc. Sat 28 May 7pm for prompt start 7.30. Open to all 16+. To enter (£5), create a poem with the theme of 'Life', be as comical, creative and honest as you like – and read or perform it at the event. Prizes will be awarded! To apply contact firstname.lastname@example.org, Vice Chairman of Bruton Festival of Arts, by 5pm 27th May 2016. Don't be shy, give poetry a try!
IF POSSIBLE PLEASE USE THE FREE PARK AND RIDE. Follow signs to the Brewham road next to the Bruton Dam, from where it is possible to catch a minibus into town. There will be cash points available in local supermarkets but we would encourage people to bring cash with them if possible to avoid pressure on them.