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Bagnall fete attracts 1,000 visitors in the Staffordshire Moorlands

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: July 02, 2014

  • New Chestnut Queen Eliza Holland with her retinue.

  • Left, Annabelle Williams, aged four, from Stockton Brook, enjoys the fete.

  • Right, new Chestnut Queen Eliza Holland poses for a picture.

  • Above, the Doomsday Morris Dancers entertain visitors at the event.

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More than 1,000 people attended the Bagnall Chestnut Queen Fete on Sunday despite the unpredictable weather.

The crowning ceremony of the new Chestnut Queen, Miss Eliza Holland, took place at St. Chad's Church, Bagnall followed by a procession to the village hall led by the Doomsday Morris dancers, stopping at the Millennium Horse Trough and the Celtic Cross on the Chestnut Tree Green.

Eliza, aged 10, attends Endon Hall Primary School and her hobbies include playing the violin, reading, dancing, swimming and has just recently achieved her green tag in Taekwondo.

After the crowning ceremony Eliza's first official duty was to formally open the fete.

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At the village hall and on the parish field visitors enjoyed stalls and games

Crowds were treated to a display of vintage tractors and other entertainment including the Domesday Morris Dancers where the public was even able to join in and learn a dance.

Other entertainment included maypole dancing by the children of Endon Hall Primary School and live music from local band, the D-Roaders. Simon the Clown entertained the younger visitors with balloon modelling. Chairman of the fete committee, Becky White, said: "Despite the poor weather throughout most of the day, crowds turned out and we saw at least 1,000 people pass through the fete during the afternoon.

"This year we had many new attractions including milk a cow and a dog show judged by local vets Rogers, Brock and Barker. Many of our stalls were sold out early in the afternoon so, although we are still counting all the money, we are hopeful of a good income from the day." The fete helps to raise funds to maintain the Moorlands Village Hall building in School Road, Bagnall.

At the ceremony retiring Chestnut Queen, Maddison Grocott presented a cheque to Les Knowles, a trustee of the Moorlands Village Hall.

This money was raised by the Chestnut Queen's Fund for the Moorlands Village Hall throughout the Queen's year of office.

A fete has been held in the village since the 1920s in the form of a traditional agricultural fair and originally featured the crowning of a Rose Queen. The Chestnut Queen fete revives these traditions and was established in 1997, on the centenary of the planting of five chestnut trees on the Bagnall village green to celebrate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee in 1897.

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