Market Lavington Museum

Fete fun and games for hire

In our blog Event details for 1924 Hospital Week we saw that the Saturday Carnival procession led to a field where a fete would take place. This was the pattern of events every Hospital Week in Market Lavington, with the proceeds going to support medical services and local folk in need due to illness. Our knowledge of what happened at the 1924 fete is that sports, bowling, darts and other competitions were involved.

At our museum we have a leaflet advertising equipment that could be hired for fetes.

Presumably it was sent as marketing to the organising committee of our local Hospital Week and it has been kept with their minutes, reports and financial accounts. What we do not know is whether any of the games were ever hired. We will share a couple of them now and some more in our next blog post.

And here are the details enlarged.

So that was a sort of gambling game, but Knock ’em is a more traditional fairground game where accurate throwing wins the prize.

We think this booklet probably dates from the 1920s, judging by the clothes worn by people in the pictures. Certainly mention of ‘the Colonies’ and the suggestion that this game requires ‘Three gentlemen’ as helpers may strike modern readers as socially unacceptable. However, ladies or gentlemen were considered appropriate for running the Flying Cat game.

If the hire fees of £2.2s.0d seem a little strange, we must recall that one pound and one shilling was known as a guinea, so these games each cost two guineas to hire.