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Summer family festival plan for Fawcett's Field sparks fears for football pitches

A CHARITY’S plan to stage a late summer family festival in New Milton prompted fears damage could be caused to the local football club’s ground.

Cary Lightfoot, founder of Creative Kids which works with disadvantaged children in the arts, gained general support from town councillors for the event.

It is due to take place in collaboration with The Barn restaurant and hotel in Gore Road on a section of Fawcett's Field adjoining it over the August bank holiday weekend, depending on coronavirus restrictions at that time.

Fawcett's Field is home to New Milton Town FC (picture: Google)
Fawcett's Field is home to New Milton Town FC (picture: Google)

But concerns were raised during an online amenities meeting as it was set to include a display of up to 40 classic cars and vans, called Show and Shine.

Committee chair Cllr Geoffrey Blunden said: “There is no vehicular access from The Barn so it would be from Fawcett's Field’s main access, but could it be a problem with vehicles going across the main field?”

Town council estates and facilities manager Mark Jeffries pointed out the event would fall at the start of a new season for the football club, with pitches at the field prepared for playing.

“It will be tricky to get the vehicles through the main entrance and all the way through, but it may well be only a small bit of area and we may be able to do something on the boundary of The Barn,” he said.

Cllr Alan O’Sullivan suggested permission could be sought from Double H Nurseries to stage the event on the corner of its field which also adjoins The Barn.

Ms Lightfoot said it was intended the event would run on the Saturday and Sunday of the holiday weekend, with attractions also including around 20 arts-and-crafts stalls and a bouncy castle.

Members agreed council officers should look into the matter, and Cllr Blunden promised they would try their best to find a way forward.

Cllr David Hawkins said: “This is an excellent idea, but we don’t want to ruin Fawcett's Field which is first and foremost a venue for sport and needs to be kept in tip-top condition.”

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