Easter fayre is cancelled as centuries’ old tradition falls victim to coronavirus

The annual Easter Fair in Great Yarmouth Market Place, April 2015. The event has been cancelled due

The annual Easter Fair in Great Yarmouth Market Place, April 2015. The event has been cancelled due to coronavirus Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2015

A town’s historic Easter Fayre has been cancelled along with a raft of other events as the coronavirus crisis deepens.

The four-day event was due to take place from April 16 to 19, a long-standing highlight in Great Yarmouth’s events’ calendar.

A Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea due to be staged at the town hall on March 22 has been cancelled and the Spirit of Enterprise Awards on March 27, have been postponed.

Carl Smith, the borough council leader, said: “Great Yarmouth Borough Council is monitoring the situation with respect to Covid-19 and continues to play an active role in the multi-agency Norfolk Resilience Forum (NRF) to support the response to this global pandemic.

“We have in place robust policies and resilience plans for emergencies and business continuity, which we continue to review and refresh as the situation develops.

“As part of our response, we have continued to review and consider the larger-scale council-run events planned in the borough.

“In light of the developing situation and the national advice around gatherings, we have today taken the decision to cancel the Great Yarmouth Easter Fair and the Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea.

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“While we appreciate that many people will be sad about missing these events, public health and safety is the top priority.

“In addition, we have decided to postpone the awards ceremony for the Spirit of Enterprise Awards until a date to be announced in due course.

“Over the coming weeks and months, we will continue to follow the latest Government advice and monitor the situation with respect to the other council-run events planned in the borough, liaising closely with the multi-agency Events Safety Advisory Group.”

The council will be contacting all those who have pre-booked for the Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea and offering full refunds.

Meanwhile the council has moved over to virtual council meetings in a bid to protect “at-risk” members.

In a joint statement, Carl Smith, the council leader, and Trevor Wainwright, the Labour group leader, said: “It is recognised that a number of borough councillors are within the at-risk category.

“As a result, all face-to-face meetings of councillors are cancelled until further notice, with the council putting in place the IT arrangements to enable virtual committee meetings to take place as soon as possible.”