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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Caravan torched, horse manure on roads & rubbish strewn across fields in traveller festival carnage

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THOUSANDS of travellers wreaked havoc as they torched caravans and had huge punch-ups in the street at Appleby horse fair.

Seven people were arrested at the annual traveller festival, as the usually quaint countryside village was left in a state by the huge groups of travellers.

Torched caravans were left by the thousands of travellers who descended on the Appleby festival

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Torched caravans were left by the thousands of travellers who descended on the Appleby festivalCredit: Guzelian
Huge piles of rubbish were strewn across the site

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Huge piles of rubbish were strewn across the siteCredit: Guzelian
The annual get together takes place in Cumbria every year

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The annual get together takes place in Cumbria every yearCredit: Guzelian
Travellers raced through the town on horses and carts

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Travellers raced through the town on horses and cartsCredit: Guzelian

Despite glammed-up women who were seen strutting down the streets, much of the town was wrecked and horse manure was littered across the roads

Tens of thousands of travellers are expected to have attended the event which honours their heritage and culture.

The celebrations kicked off on Thursday, with visitors flocking in huge numbers.

But only 24 hours hours after the party got underway, seven men were arrested following a bust-up near a pub on The Sands.

Several people suffered facial injuries, while others walked away with cuts and bruises.

Cumbria Police now understand “a number of groups” are planning to travel to the town to cause trouble “as part of ongoing feuds between different groups”.

Superintendent Matt Kennerley said: “This is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

“Policing resources will be increased in key areas and at key times.”

Armed police will be patrolling the streets and a Section 60 order is in place until 12.30am tomorrow.

It will allow officers to stop and search anyone without needing to suspect they could be carrying a weapon.

Supt Kennerley added: “These powers will help our officers to keep people safe.

“However, I also urge anyone with information about potential disorder or any other type of criminality to contact the police.

“Anyone who is seeking to come to the Fair to act violently is no friend to those of us – including Appleby people and the Gypsy and Traveller people – who wish for the Horse Fair to be an enjoyable and safe environment for all.”

It follows yesterday’s message that there is “zero tolerance for anyone who makes the decision to travel to Appleby and behave violently”.

‘ZERO TOLERANCE FOR VIOLENCE’

Around 40,000 people are due at the fair this year.

Traffic jams snaked towards the village yesterday, sparking long delays.

But many travelled along the country roads by traditional horse and bow top carts.

Some owners then rode their horses into the River Eden as part of an Appleby tradition.

The washing of horses dates back hundreds of years when animals were cleaned ready for selling.

Last year’s fair was cancelled due to the Covid pandemic, but huge crowds have descended on the area this year.

Many have pointed out a lack of social distancing, but lateral flow testing kits are being handed out on site tomorrow to help stop the spread of the virus.

The Appleby event is the biggest traditional Gypsy fair in Europe and attracts around 20,000 Gypsies and Travellers .

Two friends arriving at the annual gathering of travellers

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Two friends arriving at the annual gathering of travellersCredit: PA
Crowds watch as two men have a fight outside a pub in Appleby, Cumbria

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Crowds watch as two men have a fight outside a pub in Appleby, CumbriaCredit: Alamy
Armed police have been deployed to Appleby horse fair amid concerns of 'serious violence'

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Armed police have been deployed to Appleby horse fair amid concerns of ‘serious violence’Credit: Alamy
A horse rider splashes through the water in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria

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A horse rider splashes through the water in Appleby-in-Westmorland, CumbriaCredit: Alamy
A woman rides a horse in the River Eden

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A woman rides a horse in the River EdenCredit: NNP
Covid pushed this year's event, which should have been in June, back until August

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Covid pushed this year’s event, which should have been in June, back until AugustCredit: Alamy
Drone video shows staggering number of caravans arriving for Appleby Horse Fair as Gypsies and travellers gather in Cumbria





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