A virtual village by the sea

Ever-popular heavy horses will be at Castle Field this weekend.
Ever-popular heavy horses will be at Castle Field this weekend.

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With the weather finally looking up, many families will be hoping to go outdoors this Bank Holiday weekend. And Southsea has the perfect event for it.

From today until Monday, Castle Field is home to The Rural and Seaside Show, celebrating the best of British from 10am to 5pm daily.

Organisers of this new event promise a virtual village by the sea and an exciting programme of displays and activities for all the family.

Arena events include terrier and ferret racing and heavy horse displays. There will also be a craft marquee co-ordinated by Love Southsea, the chance to have a go at basket weaving, and a garden fete.

There will be children’s fairground rides, donkey rides and farmyard animals on site too. And there’s more entertainment in the shape of a traditional Punch and Judy show and Morris dancing.

Families can have a go at the welly-throwing competition or the egg and spoon race as part of the Village Olympics.

There will be plenty of food stalls, a tea tent with food from The Deck at Emsworth and the Seaside Inn village pub for those who fancy something a little stronger.

Visitors can even get their hair done in the hairdressing area offering vintage styling.

Cllr Lee Hunt, who is responsible for culture, sport and leisure at Portsmouth City Council, says: ‘It is a fantastic new event, which celebrates the city’s traditional seaside roots.

‘It’s part of the council’s plan to bring more and better events to our city.

‘There’s never been a better time to head to the seafront for an afternoon’s entertainment.

‘I hope lots of visitors and residents alike will take advantage of this free, fun bank holiday event and also enjoy many of the other attractions.’

A variety of local organisations are supporting the event.

Southsea Greenhouse will be offering craft sessions. Express FM are providing a compere, running the daily village Olympics, and broadcasting throughout the weekend.

Southsea Archery Club will be offering taster sessions in the moat of Southsea Castle on Saturday and Sunday. And Blue Reef will bring their rock pool exhibition.

Triton Scuba Club are providing an 18ft pool, wetsuits and equipment for the public to have a go at scuba diving.

And Portsmouth Watersports Centre will be offering the chance to try out a kayak or canoe on the grass.