THE owners of Studt Funfair have once again opened up their rides to children with learning needs for free.
The afternoon event, this year held on Thursday, which has become a tradition over the years and is also done in Cardigan, sees children from across the region come to the fair and enjoy the rides for free.
The fair’s owner, Vernon Studt, has been doing this for the last 25 years.
He said: “This is something that we’ve done for many years, the children look forward to it, and it gives us a good feeling that we’re doing something good for the community and its young children.
“It gives us all a buzz to see them enjoying the fair, we only have this once a year and they don’t see it any other time. It’s the least we can do.
“I first suggested we do it 25 years ago, and we’ve done it for many years.
“Our family has always done charity events, and this is another chance for us to give back.”
Aberystwyth Mayor Cllr Kerry Ferguson said: “It’s really lovely that the fair has been opened for free for all the schools to come down. I was chatting to some of the children earlier, they’ve all got bucket lists of rides that they want to go on. It’s heartwarming to see.”
A teacher from Plascrug School, one of the four schools invited to the fair, said: “We value the fact that children have the opportunity to go on rides today, they may not have the chance otherwise because the fair might be too busy, or their family may not have the opportunity to come. It’s a great experience and we’re grateful for it every year. It’s something special that we wouldn’t get from anywhere else.”
The fair, run by the Studt family, has been coming to Aberystwyth for 187 years, originally coming to offer formal entertainment during what was at the time a farmer’s hiring market. The tradition of a winter fair in Aberystwyth goes further back, with its origins tracing all the way back to a 1277 Royal Charter by King Edward I.
Traditionally, the fair opened for three consecutive Mondays and Saturdays, but moved to become a week-long event a few years ago.
The market has not taken place for a number of years and this year, the organisers were only in town for six days and not a week, blaming rising costs.
This year, the fair has run for six days from Monday, with the last fair of the year being held on Saturday, 18 November.
A nearby resident and town councillor, Mair Benjamin, was also quick to praise the fair following concerns raised by residents over noise from generators.
Cllr Benjamin said: “I had a few complaints, so spoke to Vernon and he sorted the problem, literally within minutes.
“I appreciate the speed and thoughtfulness shown by Mr Studt.”