Calls made to cancel this year's Seamer Horse Fair

Calls have been made to cancel this year’s Seamer Horse Fair due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

By Carl Gavaghan
Tuesday, 28th April 2020, 11:38 am
Seamer Horse Fair.

The annual horse fair is due held on Scarborough Council-owned land, off the B1261 between Seamer and Crossgates, in July.

Once a thriving meet-up in the travellers’ calendar, the number of people attending the Seamer fair has dropped in recent years.

Now, following a meeting last week between representatives of Scarborough Council and North Yorkshire Police, the site looks set to be closed, putting the fair in doubt.

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A Scarborough Council spokesman told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that a final decision will be made in the coming weeks.

The issue of the fair was raised as an area of concern by Seamer’s borough councillor Helen Mallory and the area’s county councillor David Jeffels.

In a joint statement, they said: “Many people in Seamer and Crossgates were rightly concerned that the large number of travellers and their families could pose a serious threat to the coronavirus spreading into the area.

“It is in everyone’s interests that the fair is called off – local residents, police and security staff, council officers and the travellers themselves.”

The Appleby Horse Fair, which attracts more than 40,000 people every year, has already been cancelled for 2020 due to fears over the virus.

The origin of the Seamer fair dates back to a Royal Charter issued in November 1382 by Richard II.

It was not until the 1900s that the fair became associated with travellers.

Following a pitched battle in 1911 the travellers were forbidden to enter the village or camp on the green.