Hold tight! The big day in full swing

Anya Finch gets a pelting in the name of charity
Anya Finch gets a pelting in the name of charity

THE busiest day of the year in Brighouse proved a huge success with charities well supported by the community.

Fine weather ensured healthy crowds converged on the town centre and along Bradford Road to watch a lengthy procession en route to Wellholme Park.

And it was a full house on the gala field, with stalls and attractions drawn to what is virtually a guaranteed hefty pay-day.

The procession set off from Garden Road with a mixture of motorised and walking floats, along with musicians.

In the park there was something for everyone, with a fairground, Punch and Judy shows, gymnastics and marching displays, musical entertainment, miniature railway rides and a dog show.

Jay Holroyd celebrated her 19-month-old son Isaac Holroyd-Craven winning the overall prize in the fancy dress competition.

She attached cardboard to his pram, which was painted and designed as Noah’s Ark.

She said: “I have been attending the gala since I was young and wanted to carry on the tradition with Isaac.”

Gala queen Robyn Park-Ward, aged 16, said she had enjoyed an exciting day.

“It was nice to see everyone here and see all the stalls and I would welcome being invited to other events to represent Brighouse and the gala,” said Robyn, a former Rastrick High pupil who starts a child-care course at Huddersfield New College in September.

Charities reported a roaring trade and had people queuing to spend money all afternoon.

Norma Fairclough, of the Christian African Relief Trust, said: “This is the best gala we attend and we would hope to raise £800 to £900.”

Gala life president Richard Mitchell said the crowd seemed as big as he had seen in a long time.

“Peter Edwards, our ground secretary, did a good job as everything was well dispersed around the field,” he said.

“We’ve had good weather and a good selection on offer to the crowds.”

Commercial organisations pay for a pitch on the field and keep their profits.

Charities are not charged and money raised is collected by the gala committee and re-distributed in September, along with gate receipts.