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Crowds flock to see scarecrows

PUBLISHED: 16:43 06 May 2010 | UPDATED: 17:42 30 June 2010

Some Star Wars characters joined the scarecrow festival

Some Star Wars characters joined the scarecrow festival

DESPITE the occasional downpour, Martham's Scarecrow Festival overcame the conditions to draw the crowds and be declared a soggy success.

The third of its kind, the festival ran from Sunday until Monday and raised more than £1,000 for the village, a figure helped by the new addition of more than 50 garage sales.

DESPITE the occasional downpour, Martham's Scarecrow Festival overcame the conditions to draw the crowds and be declared a soggy success.

The third of its kind, the festival ran from Sunday until Monday and raised more than £1,000 for the village, a figure helped by the new addition of more than 50 garage sales.

Among the 150 Worzel Gummidge-alikes put out and created by villagers, crowds had the chance to enjoy scarecrows that ranged from a 13ft giant through to the more traditional.

Peter Carpenter, who was involved with organising the event, explained: “I took photos of them and there were all sorts, including maypole dancing scarecrows - some were fantastic and the range was unbelievable.”

And though the St Mary's church-tower climb was cancelled due to the wind, there was a range of things to see and do.

From an art exhibition held at the same church, through to an extended fair with more rides and longer hours than last year, and via Songs of Praise on the Green, the weather couldn't stop the weekend's activities.

Peter said: “At times it was choc-a-block, but everything went well, and though numbers dropped during showers, when it stopped people packed right back in again.

“The festival has gone from strength to strength, and after a bit of a dip last year the village put on a great effort, meaning we got some good feedback.”

“This year, we're also putting together a DVD for people to buy, with all the pictures of the scarecrows and a soundtrack for people to enjoy.”

Also on offer was a craft fair in the village hall organised by Holiday Homes for the Disabled, and a large marquee on the village green offering books, CDs, DVDs and clothes.

Working in the marquee and alongside Peter to make sure things went with a swing was Steven Beales. Though a bit too busy to sample the range of things going on, he noted that among the popular attractions was a treasure hunt around the village.

Steven said: “We made a map with questions for a treasure hunt, and there were quite a few people walking around following it and looking a bit puzzled.”

The money raised will be going towards the Just for Youth Group, which is held in the community centre, and also contribute towards future events such as Martham Christmas fair.

Those interested in buying the DVD can contact Peter Carpenter on 01493 740086.

Winners of competitions over the weekend were:

Best overall scarecrow: 1 Mr and Mrs Heseltine, Scarecrow 32; 2 T D Luesby, Scarecrow 21; 3 Mrs Browne, Scarecrow 36.

Best traditional scarecrow: 1 Sally Watson, Scarecrow 19; 2 Paula Horner, Scarecrow 12; 3 Martham Local History Group, Scarecrow 47.

Visitors' favourite scarecrow: 1 Paula Horner, Scarecrow 12, 2 Mr and Mrs Heseltine, Scarecrow 32, 3 Callum and Polly, Scarecrow 4.

Treasure Hunt: Marshall Turner of Martham.


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