Desertmartin fete and vintage rally raises £5,000

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AIDED by the brilliant sunshine throughout the day, the 27th garden fete and vintage rally held at the Rectory grounds, Desertmartin,proved a memorable occasion.

Once again this year, there was widespread support from across the community and further afield.The event itself was officially opened by Sean Henry,Good Relations Officer, Magherafelt District Council.The rally began with a fancy dress parade when there were prizes for the best costumes and gifts for all who took part.The winners were – “The Three Amigos”, Claire, Brian and Kathryn Hutchinson, receiving a family pass to the Movie House,Maghera.

The first prize at this years raffle was a wooden box barrow, kindly donated along with other prizes for which organisers were extremely grateful. These were duly raffled off during the days proceedings.

There was something for everybody in the usual displays, demonstrations, stalls, sideshows, and musical entertainment. There was a car boot sale, bric-a-brac,McMullans Mobile Farm, and the London Routemaster Bus, which Usshers of Garvagh have acquired for the sale of their renowned ice cream. Additional features this year included the PSNI tractor,with advice on farm security, and a golf competition which kept everyone amused throughout the afternoon. These all proved to be a great success.The children were kept entertained by the party trailer and the penalty shootout, at which all who competed, received a medal.

Throughout the afternoon, Curragh Silver Band also Sean and Gerry McGuigan provided a variety of music, which was greatly appreciated. Again, thanks is expressed for the use of a neighbouring field for car parking, and the work of the marshals for finding space for all the vehicles. Acknowledgement for the programme produced, which will remain an interesting souvenir of the occasion.Gratitude to those who collected sponsorship and a reference goes to those featured in the programme, and thanks to them for their generous support. Indeed, in return they are commended to all for your custom and support.

An expression of sincere thanks to all who worked so enthusiastically in preparations for and participation in this annual event. Also to parishioners and friends who helped in a wide variety of ways undertaking different tasks,making all the necessary arrangements, attending preparation meetings,helping at work parties,with the erecting and dismantling of the large marquee, making contributions towards the teas, refreshment/ burger stall, and bric-a-brac.A mention to owners of all vintage vehicles, engines,machinery,and the static displays. Thanks to them and also the organisers of the different demonstrations.

To date, the total proceeds after expenses (around £1,660) amount to approximately £5,090.This splendid result reflects the hard work of so many people and once again, many thanks to all!