It's a Winter wonderland at South Molton!
PUBLISHED: 12:40 15 November 2012 | UPDATED: 22:22 20 February 2013
South Molton Business Association, (SMBA) have organised an exciting Winter Wonderland late night shopping event and lantern parade from Thursday 6th - Monday 10th December
South Molton Business Association, (SMBA) has organised the brilliantly successful Winter Wonderland late night shopping event and lantern parade for some years now and since 2009 the town has also been fortunate to have a well-supported and ever growing Christmas Fatstock Show which follows hard on its heels.
But for 2012, these two events will be held on a long weekend, being joined by a Vintage Fair and Christmas Tree Festival, to form a spectacular and packed Christmas Festival weekend for South Molton.
Christmas would just not be Christmas without decorated trees as the centrepiece and this year South Moltons Christmas Tree Festival will be the first of the weekends events to open its doors. Organisations, schools and businesses from the town have been invited to decorate a Christmas tree to reflect their group, and all entries will be on show in St Mary Magdalenes church from Thursday 6th December to Monday 10th December, from 10.00 until 4.00 each day, except on Friday 7 December, when it remain open until 9.00, to fit around the late night shopping. Also on Sunday, because of the church service, the display will not be open until 12.00. Last year, the first for this event, amazingly more than 1000 people came to admire the decorated trees, so organisers are sure that this will prove popular once again.
The Winter Wonderland section of the Christmas Festival weekend happens on Friday 7 December, with a seasonal Pannier Market, Late Night Shopping and Lantern Parade. The centre of the town will be closed to traffic for the whole weekend allowing the main Square and East Street to become pedestrianised, complete with fun fair rides, and food and drink stalls. The Lantern parade, led by the rousing rhythms of Samba Soul, will start from the Infant School and snake its way into the Square. Here South Molton Town Band will play carols, accompanied by the Choral Society. The Pannier Market will be full of seasonal goodies to eat, drink and buy as well as the always popular Santas Grotto.
On Saturday and Sunday the Vintage Fair graces the elegant Assembly Rooms. This will be a treasure trove of pretty collectables for the home and garden and full of gorgeous period items to wear and buy as Christmas gifts. A similar event held earlier this year at this venue enjoyed tremendous success, riding the wave of sentiment for items that have a history and can be reused, reutilised and upcycled.
Also on Saturday, proving that there will something for everyone, fun fair rides for all ages will be half price in the afternoon, on presentation of a special voucher. These can be requested from firstname.lastname@example.org and will be available at various outlets in South Molton from early November.
Sunday 9 December brings one of the highlights of South Moltons agricultural calendar The Christmas Fatstock Show. Much of the towns wealth originated from farming and particularly from the wool trade and the Show proudly demonstrates that agriculture remains to this day, at its heart. With a variety of farm animals to view and buy in the auction, there will also be competitions, trade stands and demonstrations of traditional crafts. This year the Christmas Fatstock Show has Youth as its main theme, with the Young Farmers organisations having a greater input, and even more classes overall. The ever-popular South Molton Vintage Rally will, once again be displaying a wide range of predominantly agricultural vehicles as part of the Show.
The newly formed Christmas Festival will continue the Fatstock Shows tradition of sponsoring and donating proceeds to a local charity. This year The North Devon Satellite Kidney Unit has been selected, as it is based adjacent to the towns Community Hospital and so prevents North Devon kidney patients having to make prolonged and regular journey to Exeter for dialysis. The late Garfield Dullum (a farmer himself) , along with the South Molton League of Friends, raised more than a three quarters of a million pounds to build the unit in 2001, and it is a charity which remains close to the communitys heart.
David Walker, Chairman of South Molton Business Association (SMBA) says: South Molton is fortunate to have already attracted many thousands of people to the Christmas Tree Festival, Winter Wonderland, Fatstock Show and Vintage Fair, but we believe that putting them together for one super Christmas Festival weekend and adding a fun fair which runs for 3 days, will really create the most amazing event, drawing people here not only from North Devon, but the whole country. Anecdotally, we already know that folk book their holidays and travel to South Molton to coincide with one of these events, so putting all four together should generate a real buzz and bring tremendous support for the towns various businesses and shops.
To secure the last few places for a trade stand or street attraction, please apply through the South Molton Business Association website atbusinesssouthmolton.org.