The occasional light shower did not deter the hundreds that flocked to Ovingham in Tyne Valley on Saturday June 15 for the annual Ovingham Goose Fair.

Those who attended were treated to an afternoon of traditional Northumbrian culture in all of its finery.

Volunteers: Debbie Reed, Hazel Irvine, Jamie Irvine, Rachel Peck and Steve MobbsVolunteers: Debbie Reed, Hazel Irvine, Jamie Irvine, Rachel Peck and Steve Mobbs (Image: Colin Burt)

Members of the Northumbrian Pipers’ Society led the procession along with Francis Jones who reprised his most famous role of 'man in a goose outfit' which he has performed nobly since 2009.

The Goose Fair banner carrier was Francis’ wife, Hanneke. The Reverend Tom Birch and Chair of the Ovingham Parish Council, Doreen Jordon followed close behind. The procession also saw the fantastic return of The Newcastle Kingsmen after many years, dancing 'The Royton' as they came over the 17th Century Pack Horse Bridge and onto the village green followed by the Step this Way Appalachian Cloggers and the Bones Creek Band, Prudhoe Scouts, Ovingham Cubs and Wylam Rainbows.

 Francis Jones (goose) and wife, Hanneke JonesFrancis Jones (goose) and wife, Hanneke Jones (Image: Colin Burt)

The ancient proclamation was read by renowned thespian and beloved village treasure, Mr. Jim Wardle who recently celebrated his 80th birthday. And with the customary three cheers the fair began. 

In the new Gosling Ring arena there was maypole dancing, lead by Elizabeth Lawson and accompanied on concertina by her husband, Bob. Anyone and everyone had a go and total beginners were warmly encouraged. Also in the ring was Paul The Magician who entertained in the round along with the fabulous BubblePlay bubble show which kept the fun level high.

One of the organisers, Lesley HoldenOne of the organisers, Lesley Holden (Image: Colin Burt)

Meanwhile on the Goose Stage the pipers, clog dancers and rapper dancers gave stunning performances, joined by a brilliant dance troupe from Ovingham Middle School led by Nicola Oliver, then the mighty Hexham Brass and the brilliant Danny 5 who had the crowd laughing, cheering and whooping with delight at his danger show.

The newly named Gooseberry Stage also hosted some of Tynedale's finest live music talent during the event including the excellent Cherry Pickers.

The Newcastle Kingsmen rapper dance groupThe Newcastle Kingsmen rapper dance group (Image: Colin Burt)

Organiser Dean Bowen said: "It turned out to be one of the best Goose Fairs ever! What a great day in the life of a great community here in Tyne Valley. Three cheers for Ovingham!"