Andover Events FamilyLife Local News

Disappointment as local funfair is not allowed to open

Edward Stokes Funfair was due to open in Andover on Smannell road, on Thursday 24th September at 5pm.

Local families were disappointed to find that they were being turned away from the funfair by staff when they arrived. They were told by the funfair staff that the council had told them that they could not open that evening but they would be reopen on Friday at 4pm.

Térri Jonés commented , “We walked a fair way to come take kids to the fair just for them to be disappointed and upset that it wasn’t open

Lauren Richards said, ” my daughter is very upset as tonight was the only night I could take her” 

Edward stokes Funfair posted on their Facebook page the following statement;

It has been a challenging year for everyone, for our industry it has been devastating but we have been given the ok by the government to be able to resume business with the following guidelines in place. We can understand some people’s concerns and would just like to reassure you our fair has the highest of standards with our protocol for covid 19, with full backing and excellent recommendations from 3 councils so far and lots of support from locals, I hope you can support us too. Here are a list of things we have in place and expect our customers to abide by a fully fenced funfair ,One way entrance and exit system , Counters on entrance and exit so we can monitor crowd numbers, Everyone must have their temperature Taken on entry, Everyone must either sign in or use our QR track and trace system on entry, Groups of more than six will not be allowed to enter, if more then six are found in the fair they will be politely asked to leave, There will be a token system in place, customers can buy tokens from the token box, the tokens will go to the customer, to the attendant and will not be used again until the next day when they have been sanitised ready to re issue, All rides, stalls and food venders have there own social distance systems in place and sanitise stations ,Numerous sanitise stations will also be found around the fair.

Unfortunately The director of public health at Hampshire County Council on Wednesday evening issued a recommendation that funfairs across the county should cease operating and any due to commence should not go ahead (in light of the increase in coronavirus cases and the government moving the national coronavirus alert level back up to level four). The Smannell Road funfair operator Edward Stokes Funfairs is currently in discussion with the director of public health at the county council.

Francesca Stokes told us, “It’s cost us a fortune to get this right and safe with full support of 3 councils so far who has given us excellent recommendations, they did actually bother to visit us. We still can’t get a public official to check us to see the outstanding safety features we have in place. We are working on it with our legal advisers now.”

The latest update on Edward Stokes Funfair page is that they will be open tonight, ( Friday 25 September, at 5pm)