Motorists beware of horse drawn wagons heading to Appleby
29 Jul 2021
Motorists driving through parts of Northumberland over the next few weeks are being warned to take extra care as the travelling community makes it way to the annual Appleby Horse Fair.
In particular drivers are being asked to be mindful of the traditional horse drawn wagons, known as a Vardo, which will be making their way through the county over the coming days and weeks. Motorists are asked to pass slow and wide past these wagons.
The annual fair usually takes place in June but because of the Covid pandemic, this year it will run from Thursday 12 August until Sunday 15 August.
The migration period through Northumberland usually starts 10 days before and lasts for up to 10 days after the fair dates.
The main routes affected by the migration are:
A69 - Newcastle to Hexham
A695 - Ryton to Hexham
A686 - Haltwhistle to Alston and return
B6305 - Hexham to Langley
“B” route through Ponteland/Belsay/Matfen/Heddon-on-the-Wall and Horsley to Hexham
In addition, extra horse drawn traffic is expected on the A68 / A696 route as travellers make their way from the St Boswell’s Horse Fair on the Scottish borders.
The annual Appleby Horse Fair in the town of Appleby-In-Westmorland, Cumbria attracts around 5,000 travellers from across the UK and Europe who attend the event to buy and sell their horses. It has existed under the protection of a Charter granted by James II since 1685.
For more information, advice and directions for motorists go to www.applebyfair.org and for information regarding the route plan contact Northumberland County Council, Gypsy Roma Traveller Liaison Officer 01670 623051 / 07867670456.