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Bishop's Castle festivals organisers quit due to huge workloads

By Charlotte Bentley | Bishop's Castle | Music | Published:

Organisers of some of the biggest festivals and events in a south Shropshire town have announced they will be standing down after next year's season.

Michaelmas fair in Bishops Castle.

At a recent Bishop's Castle Town Council meeting, it was announced that the present Michaelmas Fair Committee will be stepping down after the 25th anniversary of the fair next year.

Other festivals in the area are also facing a similar fate, as organisers for the Bishop's Castle carnival, Party in the Park and Christmas Lights among other events, say they don't have the energy to carry on the huge workload.

Over the past few years, events such as the Michaelmas Fair have brought in thousands of people and added greatly to the town's tourism, but with the increase in popularity and demand organisers say it has become like a full-time job.

They now hope to work together with the town council and look for any new volunteers who would like to come forward.

Keith Whiddon, of the Michaelmas Fair Committee, said they are looking at numerous ideas to bring the events together but also keep them unique as people have come to know them.

Michaelmas fair in Bishops Castle

"We are in a difficult position so we are possibly looking to do something to bring them all together," he said.

"We want to keep them unique and we need to preserve the festivals because they bring a lot to the economy but they have gotten so big we need to get some ideas on how to take them forward.

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"Ideally if we can get volunteers to carry on then we will, but if not then we need to have plans. We are all exhausted of doing it."

Keith said the events turn over a lot of money and it can become a full-time job.

He added: "We are discussing lots of ideas – things like going to local businesses to try and get sponsorships and if they could put money together in a pot.

"All the events would run in their own individualistic way but there would be a bigger organisation taking care of them all. Clun Green Man Festival also wants to talk to us about these ideas.

"We are all in the same boat and we need to start the dialogue. If we can't get volunteers what will we do. They bring in a lot of money and visitors to the town, they are important events."

Charlotte Bentley

By Charlotte Bentley
Community Reporter - @CharlotteB_Star

Community Reporter at the Shropshire Star, helping under-represented communities to find a voice in Shropshire and Mid Wales. Contact me at charlotte.bentley@shropshirestar.co.uk.

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