August in Dorset is busy with other people relaxing. There are camper vans, coaches, bikers and cyclists, picnickers and Paleontologists all heading to the Jurassic Coast for a good time. And then, as summer’s last lease looms, we enjoy the double delights of Buckham Fair and the Melplash Show.
Buckham Fair this year is supporting Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance, the sky doctors and nurses who turn up when we need them most. Martin Clunes’ idea to have a small fair on his spare field has raised close on half a million pounds for charity. That is a man behaving goodly. It’s a brilliant day out with all the flavour of a classic vintage fair. We shall be there keeping an eye out for the dog that most looks like Neil Morrissey. Don’t miss it.
Melplash is a real agricultural celebration dating back to 1850 when a couple of farmers challenged each other to a plough off for a fiver’s wager. Today it’s a hubub of animal husbandry, countryside skills and traditions plus a competition to find the best Bridport banger.
Last year was my first Melplash Show and I was warned to wear “sensible shoes.” So I donned my only pair of walking boots – fur lined – and tramped the fields in what turned out to be one of the hottest days of the year. My toes had their very own sauna.
Buckham Fair is on Sunday 20 August and the Melplash Show is Thursday 24 August.
See you there.