If you didn’t, you missed out on a real treat. It was such a marvellous mixture of traditional and modern. There was the coconut shy, skittles, guess the weight of the cake and produce stall all of which would have featured at a parish fete a hundred years ago. To make it even more inviting, add to these the ice creams and the refreshments being served in the Church and the must have more modern attractions of a bouncy castle and face painting (this year’s favourite design being the cross of St George which might have been because England’s football team had a very important match that afternoon which, in case you haven’t heard, they won).
This year there were tours of the Bell tower and displays of bell ringing by our own team of bell ringers and the Boys’ Brigade, all looking very smart, paraded playing their instruments. The event was also visited by a collection of vintage cars, immaculately maintained and very shiny. The stall selling jigsaws was a reminder to everyone that the next Parish event is the Jigsaw Festival at the end of August. To remind visitors of Alton life in the past, a couple of soldiers from the Civil War were on hand to explain the part the town and its church played in the Battle of Alton.
Perhaps the greatest heroes of the day were Andrew Micklefield and Clive Muller who braved the heat (it was a very, very hot day) to barbecue sausages and burgers. The other stall holders were pleased they could remain in the shade of their awnings.
However, the most important thing you would have missed is being part of a family entertainment , with something for everyone to enjoy whether you were running an attraction or visiting. It was great to see the Parish working together to ensure that our churches are here for future generations and contributing to the life of our community here in Alton.