Thousands out for summer fair
They came from all over to help raise cash for one of Ashford’s biggest charities when it held its annual summer fair at the weekend.
Pilgrims Hospices opened the gates to its site in Hythe Road, Willesborough, and admitted an estimated record-breaking 3,000 people.
A human fruit machine – three people peering through windows, holding up pictures of fruits and reacting to hooters and bells – proved popular with youngsters while adults won every one of the 1,000 bottles in what the charity dubbed the unofficial world record biggest bottle tombola.
There was also a lucky dip, live music, a timed hook-abottle game, a coconut shy, book stall and more.
Jo Sutton from Folkestone, grateful to Pilgrims for supporting several family members, dyed her hair blue then was sponsored to have it shaved off at the fair, raising £2,500 for the charity.
She said: “Anyone who has ever had any contact with the Pilgrims Hospice knows what an amazing role it plays in the lives of its patients and their families, who benefit from support in often very traumatic circumstances.”
The thousands of people who went to the fair on Saturday afternoon helped to raise a staggering £21,000.
Regional fundraising manager Nigel Donkin said: “This was our biggest and best summer fair so far. The human fruit machine was very interactive and very comical.
“Everything for sale had been donated. Whether it was the book stall, which made more than £800, or the jewellery stand which sold £600 of goods, it was all down to the generosity of the community.”
Mr Donkin wished to thank the 225 volunteers who helped run the event and Stagecoach for laying on a free park and ride service.