Town’s Christmas Fayre ‘could be the last one’ as traders snub chamber of trade invitation

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A CHRISTMAS Fayre may be a town’s last - because no new members have come forward to join the chamber of trade.

Bishop’s Waltham hosted its Christmas fayre on Thursday evening, which is often a well-attended annual event.

The High Street  Picture: Rachel Edge

The High Street Picture: Rachel Edge

However despite the great turnout for this year’s fayre, there has been ‘no interest’ from traders to join the committee in the new year.

Anna Backhouse, a current member of the chamber of trade said: ‘It’s really sad but unfortunately if the traders don’t want to step up and take it on, then it won’t happen.’

Members of the current committee confirmed in June that they would step down from their roles by January, and held meetings to talk to current traders.

But since then only one person has shown interest in joining.

Bishop's Waltham Christmas Fayre Picture: Rachel Edge

Bishop's Waltham Christmas Fayre Picture: Rachel Edge

This means much-loved town events, such as the Sunday markets and the Christmas fayres will no longer take place, unless traders decide to come forward.

Anna added if traders choose not to join the committee, they would have to explain themselves to residents and visitors to the town.

She said: ‘The more people you get into the high street, or into the town in general, it’s going to benefit your business.

‘You’ve got to look at the bigger picture.’

The Christmas fair  Picture: Rachel Edge

The Christmas fair Picture: Rachel Edge

This comes after Bishop’s Waltham enjoyed a ‘fantastic turnout’ on Thursday at their Christmas fayre.

Alan Golding, chairman of the committee, said it was the ‘busiest market’ he had ever seen.

This year’s fayre was organised by the Crown Inn manager, Kenny Dryden.

Mr Golding said: ‘We couldn’t do it without helpers like Kenny.’

The Christmas fayre on Thursday included festive stalls, a Santa’s grotto and children’s rides. There was also a town sleigh ride and performances by the Ocean Brass band in the square.