Along with many other large-scale events, Sedgemoor District Council, in consultation with the Showman’s Guild, have decided to cancel this year’s Bridgwater Fair. A Sedgemoor spokesperson said “Whilst September is some months away, there is a lot of planning, organisation and administration associated with the street market, in particular, which needs to be done now. It is impossible to guarantee social distancing within the street market. “
Town Mayor Cllr Tony Heywood commented “Whilst it is hugely disappointing, particularly following the decision to cancel the Bridgwater Carnival, the Town Council fully understands and supports the decision to postpone this year’s annual Bridgwater Fair. This is the first time since the war that the Fair has been cancelled but bearing in mind the advanced planning that is needed it makes absolute sense to take the decision now rather than closer to the date. Covid 19 is no respecter of history or tradition but I do hope something near normality will return sometime in the next 12 months. However what we don’t want is for history to repeat itself and it is quite ironic that the devastating cholera epidemic that hit Bridgwater in the 1840’s has been recently documented on the excellent Bridgwater History facebook site, a site supported by the Town Council, where a second wave of cholera was reintroduced by the travelling fair and an even more fatal second spike led to many more deaths in the Town”.
The event essentially has three elements
- The 4-day fun fair and rides on St Matthew’s Field – this is run and organised by the Showman’s Guild
- The 4-day street market in West Street, which has over 100 stalls – is organised and run by Sedgemoor District Council
- The one-day market and horse fair on St Matthew’s Field, traditionally held on the first day only – run by Sedgemoor District Council.
Stall holders and the horse fair organisers will be contacted by the Council to let them know of the decision.