...due to Irish travellers occupying the site

Organisers of the Dorset Boat Jumble at Canford Park Arena say they have been forced to cancel.

The annual event, which regularly attracts 100 exhibitors and around 1,500 visitors to the site off Magna Road, Poole, was due to take place next Saturday 23 March.

Six Irish traveller families moved onto the site’s perimeter on Saturday 16 March and although the private land owners have commenced legal proceedings to evict them, it could take between seven and 14 days to clear and clean the area.

Show spokesman Chris Chaddock, of Chaddock & Fox Promotions, said regrettably it is not possible for the show to go ahead.

He said: ‘We’re in a bit of shock at the moment, we’re less than a week away from the event, and we’ve spent quite a bit of money promoting it.

‘On Saturday 16 March at 7am, six Irish traveller families moved onto the land adjacent to Canford Park Arena.

‘The land is owned by Woodland Manor Estates Ltd, who served the eviction notice as soon as they could on Monday 18 March but it could take seven to 14 days to remove them and clean the area.

‘The landlord and organisers have therefore taken the pragmatic decision to cancel the show.

‘Chaddock & Fox Promotions apologise for any inconvenience and loss of earnings that may result from this decision.

‘We

have contacted all pre-paid exhibitors and offered a full refund or to

swop the booking for one of our other 10 remaining boat jumbles in

2013.’

Many of the stallholders booked for the Dorset Boat Jumble will now be taking part in the next C&F boat jumble in the area – Solent Boat Jumble – held on Sunday 12 May at the Royal Victoria Country Park, Netley, Southampton.

Would-be Dorset show visitors are also encouraged to attend the Hampshire boat jumble.

Chris urged people to spread the word of the cancellation and added: ‘Our concern is that members of the public will travel long distances to

attend and be disappointed.

‘The Dorset show is the only official Boat Jumble Association event in Dorset.

‘The cancellation is a big disappointment, Poole has one of the biggest natural harbours in the world, there are a lot of boats in the county and generally we have a good turnout – it’s a well-established favourite for West Country boating people

offering a low cost option for obtaining new and second hand nautical

items.

‘It’s a great disappointment but it was not practical with a week’s notice to try and move it to another venue.’
 
There are 35 boat jumbles across the UK this year, Chaddock & Fox organise 11 of these and have just acquired another three for 2014.
 
The calendar of events, organised by the Boat Jumble Association, can be found at www.boatjumbles.org.uk