THOUSANDS of people soaked up the sun at an annual May Day celebration in Portsmouth.
Around 10,000 people were expected to turn up to the May Fayre at St Mary’s Church yesterday.
Games, displays, a real ale and cider tent, stalls selling cakes, plants and bric-a-brac were among the offerings.
Southsea resident Trish Penny, 47, who went along with her husband, six-year-old son James and dog, said she was most looking forward to seeing the Morris dancers’ performance.
‘We have come here for a few years now,’ she said.
‘It has definitely got busier over that time.
‘I think from my son James’ point of view, he likes to come and find things to spend his pocket money on. Personally, I like the arena events.’
Friends Jane Fisher and Lisa Richards, both from Baffins, have gone to the event together for as long as they can remember.
‘We come every year – we used to bring the kids when they were young and now it’s just us two,’ said Jane, 47.
‘It’s a regular thing for us, every May Day we come here and enjoy it.
‘It’s always the same and is still as busy as it ever was.’
Lisa added: ‘It’s the same stalls and the same people every year. It’s a big community event. We see the same faces here every time.’
Dozens of community groups also set up their stalls around the church’s grounds, as well as inside the church.
Father Bob White said the May Fayre has been going for more than 20 years.
The Portsmouth Society, Portsmouth Pensioners’ Association and the Dickens Fellowship were among groups who joined in on the day – one of the biggest community events of the year.
Linda Johnson, administrator of Fratton Big Local, a community group funded by the National Lottery, said: ‘We are here because we have got £1m to spend over the next 10 years in Fratton. We’re going out and talking to people about our plans and get suggestions that people may have and try and get more people involved.
‘We have taken a few names down at this event and had some suggestions passed on.
‘We came to the event to try and raise our profile and get more people involved.’