Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Fete and dog show raises £3,200 for church appeal

Fete and dog show raises £3,200 for church appeal

A FETE raised more than £3,200 for St James’s Church in Bix.

Attractions at the annual event hosted by the villages of Bix and Assendon, which was not held last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, included the return of the popular dog show.

There was also a tombola and games such as throwing golf balls into a bucket, a human fruit machine and “a roll-a-10p” board and a raffle with prizes donated by Hobbs of Henley, the Nettlebed Creamery and Henley Festival.

The money raised will go towards a project to extend the church and transform it into a community hub.

Organisers Matt and Emma Beesley, who live in Bix, said they had to adapt the fete so it could go ahead in line with the government’s covid restrictions.

Mr Beesley, who works in financial services,  ran a “treasure hunt” stall with his daughter Lucy, 14. He said: “Other villages have decided not to do community events like that this year because of the pandemic.

“We had to do health and safety assessments and there were signs about keeping movement one-way. Those rules may fall away soon, but for us it required a fair amount of planning and we had to think it through quite carefully. The fact that it went ahead was so great and I’m all about trying to build on community spirit and interaction.”

Mrs Beesley, a counsellor, added: “Bix and the Assendons are small but friendly villages and this is a highlight of the village year. Like many events, some things were a little different this year, but the strong sense of community remains the same.”

Live music, a regular feature of the village fete, was not possible this year due to the covid restrictions and there was also extra cleaning required by stallholders. A tombola stall was run by Kieran and Karen Duthie from Middle Assendon, with ticket numbers in intervals of five earning a prize.

Lachlan Baxter, four, from Bix, and his German shepherd Arwen, nine, won the “My Dog’s Got Talent” category of the dog show.

The winner of the “Waggiest Tail” was Pepper, a one-year-old cavapoo, owned by Vivienne Higton-Burnell, 11, from Henley.

The show is organised by Woofits Walkies, a Henley dog-walking service, with other categories including the most fabulous fella, loveliest lady and cutest pup.

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