Many of you have raised questions about the Charter Fair this year. I too have concerns, as do a number of my fellow councillors. I have raised those concerns with councillors, with Hall Barn, who run the fair and with Buckinghamshire Council.
I must stress having lived and worked in Beaconsfield for 55 years I am a strong supporter of the fayre. I have visited the event almost every year since 1967, but it is this year, in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic, that these concerns arise.
This last year has been very difficult for many companies and I am sure the Showman’s Guild have suffered greatly. The Guild has worked hard on putting together reports as to how to make the event safe for members of the public. I have looked through the assessments and responses from police and local authorities. It would seem that the various requirements have been met and extra staff will be employed to monitor numbers.
Also this week there has been a response from Buckinghamshire Council, saying
“We have asked for more detailed risk assessments and arrangements to be provided for the particular inflatable attractions and more enclosed rides and will review these once received. Thames Valley Police will have officers present who will primarily be deployed to manage any public order issues. Environmental Health Officers will be present during the set up and operation of the fair to ensure that the control measures are maintained and will be prepared to take appropriate action if necessary. Prior to the event the Hall Barn Estate will gauge overall public opinion and take a view nearer the time as to whether they will continue to allow the fair to take place.”
I hope you are assured that everyone involved with running the event do have safety in mind and are keeping the situation under review.
It is a shame the date cannot be changed to later in the year but due to the Charter this is not possible. We have managed as a town to be diligent and careful and so far, have not had any outbreaks. I hope that it will stay this way over the coming months.
If the Fayre does go ahead, we will welcome you to our historic town but please act responsibly and be aware of commitments to keep the event safe.
Cllr Alex Dunlop
Mayor of Beaconsfield