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Thursday, 30 October 2014

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Hundreds flock to Coniston for country fair

HUNDREDS of people flocked to the sun-baked shore of Coniston for the annual country fair.

 In stark contrast to last year’s torrential rain, the sun shone down on Coniston on Sunday.

The event featured scores of stalls selling artwork, local produce such as cheeses, jams and cakes, children’s games and the popular dog show.

Some 65 runners took part in the six-mile fell race up Coniston Old Man, which was won by Mark Addison of Helm Hill, who completed the race in 54 minutes and 11 seconds – two minutes outside the record.

Second was Alan Smith from Deeside, who was also the winner of the male veteran 50 section, with a time of 60 minutes and 30 seconds and Darren Holloway from Pennine was third, who was also the winner of the male veteran 40 class.

The first woman past the finish line was Anna Rybe from the USA, who completed the race in a time of 66 minutes and 50 seconds, coming eleventh overall.

Second was Hazel Robinson of Ambleside and Fiona Hughes was third.

The winner of the male veteran 60 class was Dave Fell with Wendy Dodds winning the female veteran 60 and Lynda Howard winning the female veteran 50 section.

The prizes were presented by Westmorland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron who normally competes in the race but was unable to do so this year.

Mr Farron did manage to take part in the egg throwing competition, writing about it on his Facebook page.

Other events featured included a Herdwick sheep show, Cumberland and Westmorland wrestling, craft marquee, children’s sports, ferret racing, terrier racing, demonstration of local crafts, stick show, hound and terrier show, pet show, over 70 trade stands, side shows and refreshments.

Neil Salisbury is treasurer of the Coniston Country Fair committee.

Mr Salisbury said: “We’ve had fantastic weather, everybody is soaking it up and hopefully we will have a record attendance. This year’s event includes the biggest ever craft show and it looks like we have had excellent entries for the hounds and beagles.

“After many months of work it’s all come together really well.

“Considering the day we had last year, with the bad weather, it was actually amazing how many people we did have but we will have exceeded that by a long way this year.

“The weather always makes a huge difference and will have attracted a lot of people to the area.”

Organisers also thanked everyone who helped out on the day.

David Robinson said: “We are indebted to our prize sponsor Norman Garside for the magnificent stone trophies and also the helpers on the day including in particular Coniston Mountain Rescue who marshalled the top of the Old Man and our local Community Support Police officers and St Johns Ambulance service and the friends who manned the entry desk and helped with the day.”

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