Record crowds as Ben Rhydding fete celebrates ten years

From Ilkley Gazette.

BEN Rhydding’s Valley Drive field was buzzing on Saturday as a record crowd enjoyed the tenth anniversary of the Ben Rhydding Community Fete.

The Fete, which has become a regular date on the Ben Rhydding social calendar, was officially opened by Councillor Stephen Butler, vice-chairman of Ilkley Parish Council.

Entertainment included displays of dancing and gymnastics and stalls hosted by numerous local clubs, societies and charities. There was the chance to have a go at croquet and bowls, and, along with plenty of ice-cream and a bouncy castle, it all made for a fun-filled family afternoon for all ages attracting a record crowd.

With the theme of this year’s celebratory event combining the royal 90th birthday and the first year of the first Ben Rhydding Scarecrow Festival, it was appropriate that the scarecrow with the most votes was a representation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on St John’s Road. Stansfield Close was awarded best street for their Jungle Book scarecrows.

The winner of the scarecrow fancy dress competition was seven-year-old Freya Hein, whose very authentic costume was adorned with lots of black crows. The 2nd Bradford North Seeonee Beavers and Cubs also took part and all won a prize.

The tea tent did a roaring trade, burgers were barbecued and the Wheatley Arms manned the beer tent. Music was provided by the Singe n’ Swing Jazz Band.

“Altogether it was a great day and one of the most successful fetes to date,” said organiser Mrs Karen Palframan. “We’ve been going ten years now. We’ve grown a lot in that time, and are in need of some more people on the fete committee, so we’d be very pleased to hear from anyone who might be interested.”

For further information contact Karen Palframan at , or 01943 607334. Visit for more photos.

*The scarecrow trail solution was ‘Happy Birthday HM’, and the prize of a meal for two at The Wheatley Arms was won by Emma Docherty and family, who also guessed the closest number of scarecrows on the trail.

Ilkley Gazette – Ben Rhydding Community Fete

Ilkley Gazette 16th June 2016


THERE will be double celebrations this year, when the Ben Rhydding Community Fete celebrates not only its own tenth anniversary, but also the Queen’s 90th birthday in her official birthday month.

With an appropriate theme of red, white and blue, the fete will take place on Saturday, June 18 on the Valley Drive field from 2pm to 4pm.

The fete is sponsored by local businesses Audley Clevedon and The Wheatley Arms, and with a host of local community groups, sports clubs, schools, churches and charities taking part, will offer a wide array of attractions, including stalls, games and entertainments, as well as a bouncy castle, croquet competitions, golf challenges and a raffle.

Last year 126 pupils and parents from All Saints; Ashlands; Ben Rhydding; Burley and Woodhead; Burley Oaks; Ghyll Royd; Moorfield; Sacred Heart; Westville House and Ilkley Grammar schools participated in a One Ball – Six Hoops competition organised by Ben Rhydding Croquet Club, which will take place again this year. All equipment, for juniors and adults, will be provided by the Croquet Club.

And if that all sounds too exhausting there will be tea and beer tents, a barbecue and plenty of ice cream to restore those energy levels.

“There’ll be something for everyone,” said organiser Mrs Karen Palframan, “and as usual we’ve got something extra.” That something extra this year will be a Scarecrow Garden, marking the end of the first Ben Rhydding Scarecrow Festival which has been running since May 30. Scarecrows have been popping up around Ben Rhydding and a trail sheet has been available for £1 from the Wheatley Arms, with all proceeds going to the Marie Curie Hospice in Bradford.

At the fete, the scarecrows will gather in the Scarecrow Garden, winners of various categories will be announced and, with prizes to be won, children are being encouraged to come as a scarecrow for a scarecrow fancy dress competition at the start of the afternoon.

It was in 2006 that the very first Fete was held on Bolling Road field and over the years since then it has become well-established with its home now on the Valley Drive field on the third Saturday in June.

“It’s become a very popular event,” added Mrs Palframan “It’s grown such a lot over the years and we really hope to keep it going year on year, but actually, ten years on now, we would very much welcome new committee members to help with the planning stages and also some extra helpers on the day to lend a hand. We’d love to have several new people on board and would ask them to get in touch.”

The Fete takes place on Saturday, June 18 from 2 – 4pm and entrance is free. For further information, call 01943 607334 or e-mail: . See also or find the fete on Facebook.