More than 5,000 enjoy Hednesford Festival
THOUSANDS of people made the most of the warm weather before the rain as they turned out to a thriving community festival.
More than 5,000 people took to Hednesford Park as they enjoyed the festival on Saturday.
Organisers behind the event, now in its third year, said the event was the best yet, with plans to outdo their success next year.
Paul Woodhead, vice-chairman of organiser Hednesford in Partnership, said: "It went really well, we had a really good day.
"We are getting feedback from people that it went better than last year, which we did not think was possible.
"It seemed to be really enjoyed by the community. We had the weather for most of the day, the rain held off until after the event."
More than 100 organisations pledged their support to the five-hour festival, with up to 65 market stalls on offer for visitors to browse.
Pooches brought in the crowds as they flaunted their skills during a dog agility show, while a display of classic cars, bikes and trucks enticed motor lovers.
Performers and musicians helped the good vibes continue throughout the day, including Cannock Wood and Gentleshaw Musical Society.
Youngsters giggled away during Punch and Judy shows, alongside bouncy castle and slides, fun fair rides and a toddler area.
Mr Woodhead said: "There was a fantastic atmosphere. Everybody was using the park, which is what we want, the park is there for the community to use.
"We had something for everybody and everybody went away with a smile on their face.
"We all live fast-paced lives whether we want to or not. This brings everybody together in one place.
"It's a chance to see that we don't necessarily see, to do things as a family, and for us all to take a step out of day-to-day life for a day together as a community."
Organisers behind the celebrations, who started planning the community event in January, will now set their sights on the town's Christmas lights switch-on.
Mr Woodhead said the team will continue to gather feedback from the festival, 'taking lessons' from this year before making a start on the town's fourth free event.
The 48-year-old added: "When we are getting thousands of people staying for the day, it's really good to see, and that's what it brings to the community.
"We do have a strong community spirit in Hednesford and the surrounding areas."