Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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A Danger to the Public

Galloping Horses at a Fairground

Isle of Wight Observer 26 April 1890
During the past few days there has been a “fair” at Oakfield,—that is, certain peripatetic vendors of sweets, roundabout proprietors, and shooting galleries, have encamped on a bit of waste ground just outside the borough.

But there seems to be an element of danger to the public in these amusements which ought to receive attention.  A well-known local tradesman was driving down Oakfield-hill on Tuesday, and, when opposite the roundabouts, heard a report.  At the same time a piece of broken glass struck the side of his face with considerable violence, near the eye, and inflicted a wound.  It seems the competitors were firing at bottles strung on a line, and when these were hit the fragments flew over into the road.  Surely the police ought to prevent such a dangerous practice.


Whilst we mention “Fairs” at Oakfield, it will be remembered, the Ball family of travellers, who toured the country with their fair, and finally settled in the Oakfield area in the early 1900’s.  Although they pursued other occupations as well, their fair was a very popular entertainment for the local residents, and other towns and villages around the Island.

You can read more about William, one of the sons of William & Ruth Ball, who travelled with his parents and the fair HERE


Source: IW Observer & RSHG Archive
Image: BBC Victorian History
Article: Ann Barrett