Combe Raleigh bell fund gets a big boost from fete

PUBLISHED: 07:00 04 September 2016 | UPDATED: 08:42 07 September 2016

Visitors enjoy the attractions at Combe Raleigh's fundraising fete.

Visitors enjoy the attractions at Combe Raleigh's fundraising fete.


Organisers of a grand garden fete held in Combe Raleigh have hailed the event a ‘resounding success’ - despite the rain.

More than 200 people flocked to the event, held at Combe Hill Estate, by kind permission of the Lazarus family.

There, they enjoyed an afternoon full of traditional fun and games.

The fete also raised more than £5,000 for the St Nicholas’ Church Bell Fund, which is aiming to raise £75,000 to increase the existing ring of three bells at the church to six.

Thanks to the money raised at the fete, the project has topped 90 per cent of its overall fundraising goal - though the exact total is still being totted up.

Trevor Hitchcock, a Combe Raleigh bellringer, said: “There were pony rides and a steam traction engine, also giving rides and for the train enthusiasts a model railway to admire.

“Traditional games included garden chess, a coconut shy, hook-a-boat, shove ha’penny, ping pong Pringles, the doughnut challenge, wet sponge shy and Daisy the cow - the winner ‘milked’ over three quarters of a litre in 30 seconds!

“For the more energetic, after the girls had shown how Maypole dancing should be done, there was an opportunity to join in, also a football shoot-out and the tennis challenge – play the pro, who had flown in from America that day especially for the event.

“After all that exhausting exercise then cream teas and cake were available on the terrace, while thought was given to how much to bid in the silent auction.

“Among the lots were tickets to see Arsenal play at the Emirates Stadium, including lunch, a bespoke hat, for that special occasion, by a London milliner, a commissioned portrait, a long weekend in a luxury cottage in Combe Raleigh and a rooftop tour of Exeter Cathedral.

Trevor added that he and his fellow ringers would like to thank everyone who went along and supported the event, including sponsors, supporters, stall holders and especially the Lazarus family.

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