Village fun day switches venue after council voices Covid concerns

Vikings and Imperial Stormtroopers join forces at a previous Belton Fun Day.

Vikings and Imperial Stormtroopers join forces at a previous Belton Fun Day. - Credit: Submitted

A village fun day will take place at a new location after concerns were raised about thousands of people potentially attending the event. 

Belton Fun Day and Classic Cars Show normally draws a crowd to the sports field on New Road on the second weekend in August. 

This year, however, Belton with Browston Parish Council, which leases the site, voted against hosting the annual jamboree. 

Children watch an animatronic dinosaur at Belton Fun Day.

Children watch an animatronic dinosaur at Belton Fun Day. - Credit: Submitted

According to the minutes of a meeting held last month, the parish council decided the risks would outweigh the benefits, with members voicing concerns about social distancing. 

While Great Yarmouth Borough Council has cancelled large events this summer, a spokesman confirmed it is possible for some gatherings to take place, providing appropriate risk assessments and event management plans are in place. 

Karen and Phil Wellsby, organisers of Belton Fun Day and Classic Car Show.

Karen and Phil Wellsby, organisers of Belton Fun Day and Classic Car Show. - Credit: Submitted


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Karen Wellsby, who organises Belton Fun Day with her husband Phil, said they had only wanted to plan the event and that it would follow all government restrictions in place at the time.

After the parish council’s decision, villagers set up a petition, which was signed by 200 people, and there was “a bit of a social media frenzy, she said.

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“Then Julie from the car boot sale approached and said she would be happy to hold it there," she added.

The event is now being planned for Saturday, August 7, at Julie’s Car Boot field on Market Road in Burgh Castle. 

Children enjoy a Punch and Judy show at a previous Belton Fun Day.

Children enjoy a Punch and Judy show at a previous Belton Fun Day. - Credit: Submitted

Should the event go ahead, it would be its sixth installment. The most recent event, in 2019, attracted up to 4,000 people. Last year it was cancelled.   

Ms Wellsby said: “The first time we held it we thought a couple of hundred people would turn up but 1,500 people turned up.” 

All going according to plan, entertainment at this year’s gathering will include a circus, dinosaurs, fire-breathing and a Punch and Judy show, as well as food and craft stalls. 

Belton Fun Day and Classic Car Show could take place on August 7 this year

Belton Fun Day and Classic Car Show could take place on August 7 this year at Julie's car boot field in Burgh Castle. - Credit: Submitted

There will also be 150 to 200 classic cars and a Viking battle re-enactment. 

The borough council has said it is encouraging anyone planning events to get in touch to discuss their aspirations from the perspective of public safety. 

"Our website also has guidance from the Event Safety Advisory Group, a multi-agency group providing a single point of contact for event organisers," the council said.

One of the vehicles on display at a previous Belton Fun Day.

One of the vehicles on display at a previous Belton Fun Day. - Credit: Submitted


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