Summer fair proves a resounding success

Hundreds of people attend the Whitley Lodge Summer Fair.
Hundreds of people attend the Whitley Lodge Summer Fair.

Record crowds helped turn a family fun day into a resounding success.

Around 2,000 people enjoyed the annual summer fair at Whitley Lodge shopping centre in Whitley Bay.

Bright sunshine and a packed programme of entertainment helped boost the crowds with organisers, Whitley Lodge Community Spirit, saying numbers were well up on previous years.

And around £1,000 was raised to help improve Whitley Lodge including new Christmas lights.

The Rev Benjamin Carter, of St Mary the Virgin Church, Monkseaton, who chairs Whitley Lodge Community Spirit, said: “It was a brilliant day out for all the family.

“It was wonderful to see the community come together and support the event in such large numbers.

“The organisers would like to thank all the volunteers, individuals and groups who helped including local businesses, churches, community groups, North Tyneside Council and the emergency services.’’

Entertainment included a food fair, craft stalls, live music, fairground rides, bouncy castle, face painting, tombola and animal antics for the children, plus an exhibition from the Tynemouth World War 1 Commemoration project.

Also in attendance were London 2012 Team GB volleyball stars Peter Bakare and Nathan French, who represent youth sport organisation Your Student Body.

Peter said: “We had a fantastic time as guests of our friend John Evans and the local business community.

“Nathan and I met a lot of kids who loved taking part in all kinds of physical activity and a lot who wanted to do more.”

He added: “We’re hoping we can reach out to student athletes across North Tyneside in the coming weeks and months.

“We both know how hard it is as a student to play sport and, at the same time, do everything that’s required to pass exams and gain qualifications.”

The elite athletes attempted to pass a beanbag a distance of six feet while wearing specially adapted ‘beer goggles’.

“It just shows how even a little alcohol can impair your senses,” said Nathan.

“Peter and I pride ourselves on our hand-eye co-ordination but wearing the ‘beer goggles’ was frightening. I think it sent out the right message with a fun angle.”