Every year, on the two Saturday each side of October 11th, the Fair comes to town. My lovely High Street is closed at midday on Friday and the trucks roll in. They spend all afternoon banging and screwing and throwing bits of kit about, and somehow the street is transformed into a fairground. By Saturday it is full of children and balloons and thumping music, strobe lights, the smells of old cooking oil and fried onions. Which brings out the child in me - it is rather wonderful.
This year I took a trip along the street last Friday afternoon, while the whole thing was taking shape. And began to see some of the problems faced by the men (it is always men) putting these rides up. For our High Street is on a slope. And the rides have to be horizontal ... and so they must devise safe, secure ways to make sure everything stays upright.
Some are secured by a game of Jenga:
This looks a little sturdier, I'm sure it will be fine once it's checked with a spirit level:
I couldn't work out quite how the helter-skelter was kept upright - but it wasn't blowing in the wind, so it must be fine:
And this ride - which is one that throws everyone around until they vomit - relies on some interesting poles: