TOWN ENJOYS BEST OF THE FEST! - Saltash shakes off lockdown and comes to life with SaltFest
Fore Street and Longstone Park were packed with people on Saturday as SaltFest went ahead, much to the delight of many after months of life under lockdown rules Saltfest organiser Councillor Hilary Frank and her volunteer crew (right) PICTURE: PAUL WILLIAMS
4th August 2021
By Suzanne Cleave
Wow, what a day! That was the overwhelming reaction to Salt- Fest, held in Saltash on Saturday 31st July.
Fore Street was lined with local organisations and businesses, and Longstone Park was transformed into a festival style event. Fortunately, the rain held off, and young and old enjoyed a great day out, with many commenting that it felt great that life was getting back to normal.
After the cancellation of the Saltash May Fair, Hilary Frank (Cornwall councillor for Saltash Essa) and Sarah Martin (Saltash Chamber of Commerce chair) got together with the help of Aaron Monk of Diverse Events to plan SaltFest.
The event had been on the back burner since the beginning of the year, but after a rise in covid cases, the organisers were left unsure as to whether they would be able to pull off such an event.
Bookings weren’t taken until the beginning of July, so it was three weeks of immense work, carried out by just three people.
Hilary said: “Three people in three weeks, it was bonkers, but it was brilliant! People loved seeing each other again. I had my misgivings as it was the first big event we’ve done since lockdown. There were lots of extra precautions taken, but the crowd was so good natured. It was fantastic and such a nice atmosphere.”
In Fore Street, groups were able to use their stalls to raise much-needed funds or help with volunteer drives. Others raised awareness of current initiatives, such as Saltash Environmental Action (SEA) whose volunteers were promoting their Bin the Butt campaign, which highlights the impact cigarette butts that are dropped on the street or dropped down the drain have on marine environment.
Other organisations included the U3A, the Saltash branch of the Royal British Legion, Saltash Baptist Church, The Core, Saltash Wesley Methodist Church, Stage Young Persons Theatre Company.
Also making an appearance in Fore Street were Zig Zag, the children’s entertainer, Roxie Grew, The Kites and GraceNotes Acapella.
Among those taking to the stage in Longstone Park were The Kites, The Ukeabillies, Helm and the All Star Band, with I Love Amp bringing proceedings to a close.
More raffle tickets were sold on the day, and organisers believe the event broke even. The response from people in Saltash has been great, with Hilary adding: “It was a great platform for people to see the community is back in business. “
“When I went down Fore Street today, people were coming out of the shops saying, ‘thank you, it was great’. The general public was happy and the retailers were happy as it brought people into the town. Thank you to everyone who supported it.”