GALLERY: Dairy Festival attracts thousands to Weston-super-Mare

PUBLISHED: 13:00 09 August 2017

Dairy Festival livestock displays.

Dairy Festival livestock displays.

Archant

Thousands of people descended on Weston Dairy Festival to learn about agriculture and try their hand at being a farmer.

Victoria Gibson from Quilting in the Meadows with a customer.Victoria Gibson from Quilting in the Meadows with a customer.

The event’s organisers said the festival was a success despite having to battle bad weather and heavy traffic jams at the beginning of the five-day event.

Babs and Zoe from the Fantastic Jems Emporium.Babs and Zoe from the Fantastic Jems Emporium.

Co-organiser Lorraine Young said: “We are really pleased with how the dairy festival went.

Em's All Sorts with Emma Sweet.Em's All Sorts with Emma Sweet.

“Because of the windy weather and traffic we saw a decrease in footfall on the Thursday and Friday, but Saturday and Sunday were very busy.”

Bison and venison burgers by Angus and Rosie from Bush Farm Catering.Bison and venison burgers by Angus and Rosie from Bush Farm Catering.

Although official numbers have not been announced, it is thought thousands of people headed to the Beach Lawns, in Marine Parade, on Saturday and Sunday.

Live music.Live music.

Weston Arts Social Enterprise director Terry Gilbert, a lead organiser, said he ‘could not be happier’ with the overall turnout and the weather at the weekend.

Live music.Live music.

Lorraine told the Mercury the festival focused on education this year in the hope of teaching the town’s young people about farming, animals and agriculture.

Alex with her Nifty Nut Butters.Alex with her Nifty Nut Butters.

She added: “The kids loved the duck and ferret races, which were interactive and really engaged the young people.

Avon Owls' Darren Jenkins feeding baby barn owls.Avon Owls' Darren Jenkins feeding baby barn owls.

“It was amazing to see as some of the children had never seen these kind of animals before, one child even mistook a calf for a camel.”

Kingston Exotics reptile handling.Kingston Exotics reptile handling.

Families were also able to try their hand at milking a cow and climbing on a tractor as well as exploring more than 80 craft stalls and 20 local food vendors.

Kingston Exotics reptile handling.Kingston Exotics reptile handling.

The lawns were filled with music throughout the weekend, with music from the likes of Ellie Rialas, The Zeals, Dan Donnelly and Mohawk Radio.

Dairy Festival livestock displays.Dairy Festival livestock displays.

The festival was first launched in the 1960s and attracted thousands of people each year before it was cancelled after funding was withdrawn.

Dairy Festival livestock displays.Dairy Festival livestock displays.

But new organisers breathed new life into the event in 2015 when new organisers revived it with help of new sponsors, 20 years after it was cancelled.

Dairy Festival livestock displays.Dairy Festival livestock displays.

But more funding is needed to sustain the popular seaside event in the long run.

Lorraine said: “We do not want to be a paid event but it costs more than £30,000 to operate the dairy festival.

“We hope the event will come back next year but it comes down to the sponsorship.”

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