Wisbech Rose Fair: Events, parking and more for the decades-old fair being revived this year

Wisbech Castle will be covered in yarn and play host to historical re-enactments
-Credit: (Image: Google)

A decades-old fair that has been cancelled for the last five years is set to return to a Cambridgeshire town. Wisbech's Rose Fair, beloved for its parades, is being revived this year. The event on Saturday (June 29) will mark 61 years since the first Rose Fair, in which rose buds were sold to raise money for the local church.

The 11th century castle will be “yarn bombed” with knitted items created by and donated to Lyncroft Care Home. According to Cllr Samantha Hoy, event organiser and chairman of Wisbech Town Council's community events and festivals committee, the display is expected to be almost as large as the Guinness World Record winner for the biggest “yarn bomb”.

Cllr Hoy continued: “Rose Fair is a really historic event for Wisbech. There has been an extremely positive reaction to the decision to revive the festival.

Cllr Samantha Hoy, who chairs Wisbech Town Council's community events and festivals committee
Cllr Samantha Hoy, who chairs Wisbech Town Council's community events and festivals committee -Credit:Cllr Samantha Hoy

“The organisation is going really well. We have around 20 groups signed up to be in the parade. People from all over the world have donated knitted items. The organisation of the ‘yarn bomb’ by the care home helps to show the community atmosphere around the event, which is good to see.”

Cllr Hoy put the cancellation of the fair for the last five years down to a “perfect storm” of Covid-19, loss of involvement by St Peter and St Paul’s church, and difficulties with encouraging lorry drivers to get involved in the float parade.

An attempt to create a two-week event failed last year, contributing to the decision for the fair to last just one day this year. Historically, Rose Fair has lasted a week.

When is the Rose Fair?

The fair will run between 10am and 4pm on Saturday (June 29). The parades will start at 11am and 2pm.

How can I get involved in the Rose Fair parades?

People will meet at St Peter's Church Hall and the parades will end on York Row. The theme this year will be: "Where it all Began in the 60's".

If you plan to get involved as part of a group, you should fill in an application form on Wisbech Town Council's website here.

What Rose Fair events and activities will be held and where?

The fair will run across different town centre venues. Events will include music in Market Place, flower displays and cream teas at Trinity Methodist Church, and historic cars displayed on The Crescent. Historic re-enactments will also take place at Wisbech Castle, and children will be able to get involved in fossil hunting or watch the dinosaur show.

More activities can be found in the map below.

Rose Fair map and activities
Rose Fair map and activities -Credit:Rose Fair / Cllr Samantha Hoy

Where can I park for Rose Fair?

One of the nearest car parks to activities will be Castle Square Car Park on Union Place. The four council-run car parks in Wisbech are also close to the centre of town: Chapel Road, Somers Road, Church Terrace and West Street.

West Street car park only has 15 parking spaces and no disabled bays, and has a maximum parking period of two hours in any three-hour period. However, the other three council-run car parks have more than 200 spaces, at least six disabled bays, and are available to use for up to 24 hours.