Fenland couple James and Claire Dean decide to cancel fun fair due to open tonight in City Road, March

PUBLISHED: 14:32 19 March 2020 | UPDATED: 15:07 19 March 2020

All set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KING

All set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KING

Archant

Fenland couple James and Claire Dean decided earlier today to up sticks and dismantle their family’s fun fair planned for City Road, March.

All set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KINGAll set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KING

Other members of the Showman’s Guild had already begun joining them for the three-day event that should have opened tonight (Thursday),

But the couple decided to pre-empt possible restrictions – and the real possibility that people may not attend – by making the decision themselves.

“We were getting ready to open, going through insurances and tests,” said Claire

The family fun fair, based in March for the past 20 years, will now be put on hold for the foreseeable future

All set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KINGAll set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KING

Claire said they had received unfair criticism (from people who didn’t know them) that some of the operators of ride and sideshows were coming from Europe.

“There was quite an uproar about it in local Facebook over discussion pages – bringing in people from Italy or Germany to the town The truth is we are local and probably see many of those who aired their criticism in Sainsbury’s in March or on the High Street.”

She said some of the fair rides were provided by her family with others coming from Kings Lynn, Wisbech, Grantham and Wilburton.

The furthest others had come from were Essex, she said, and the family is well known for operating fairs across the area. Many of these, she said, were already being cancelled including Yaxley, Waterbeach and Sutton Bridge events

All set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KINGAll set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KING

“We intend to weather the storm and pull back into our winter quarters,” she said. “Quite what happens now we are not sure about”

Claire praised Fenland District Council for their co-operation and support; they had been in talks with the council throughout and by making the decision to close themselves had made it easier for everyone

Fenland Council has waived the rental fees for the car park and Claire said they would, of course, be back once the present crisis is over.

A Fenland District Council spokesman said: “We fully support the decision taken by Dean’s Fun Fairs not to go ahead with the March Spring Fair, which was due to open in City Road car park, March, this evening.

All set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KINGAll set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KING

“Residents had the choice of whether or not to attend the fair, given the Government’s advice on social distancing, so it is a selfless decision on the organisers part to close the fair with the health and wellbeing of the local community in mind.”

All set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KINGAll set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KING

All set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KINGAll set up and ready to go but a short time later James and Claire Dean were dismantling the fun fair planned for City Road March. Picture; DAVE KING

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