We Love Tamworth countdown is on

The countdown is on to the popular We Love Tamworth extravaganza which returns to the Castle Grounds this Saturday, marking the perfect end to the summer holidays.

A highlight in the town’s annual calendar of events, We Love Tamworth will bring a jam-packed day of activities for the whole family on September 2nd.

The programme boasts the return of many firm favourites including fairground rides, stalls, games, inflatables, a dog show, impromptu raves, sing-a-longs, a parade by the Mercian Regiment and much more.

At the centre of the festivities there will again be a special action-packed area to keep youngsters busy all day. The dedicated Children’s Zone will feature a variety of activities including walkabout characters, bouncy castles and slides, face painting, giant games and craft activities. Entry to the Children’s Zone is £3 for children - adults get in free of charge - and children can come and go as they please throughout the day.

New for this year and also part of the Music Outside summer programme of free concerts, Mr Wilson’s Second Liners marching band will be rallying impromptu raves with local community musicians and special guests. Hot-stepping out in uniformed style, they channel the spirit of the 24-hour party people, guaranteed to get audiences dancing wherever they play.

The stalls arena is again being run by Tamworth Lions club, which has been supporting local charities and causes for 40 years. A variety of stalls have already been confirmed including Relax Kids, The Fairy Dig Mother, The Pea Pod Family, St Giles Hospice,

Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, girl guides,  gifts, toys, refreshments, pet products and even Silverstaruk, a charity which will be conducting free diabetes tests.

Dog lovers are invited to enter their four-legged friends into the fun dog show, with a variety of classes competing regularly throughout the day.

Presented by Tamworth Borough Council’s Arts & Events team, the exciting event is now in its fifth year. The 2016 event attracted a record-breaking number of visitors from near and far and this year’s event is guaranteed not to disappoint.

This is also the 10-year anniversary of the formation of The Mercian Regiment at Tamworth Castle Grounds and a special parade will be taking place to mark the event. Known as ‘the Heart of England’s Infantry’, the regiment is one of the most decorated and operationally experienced regiments in the British Army.

Exercising the Regiment’s freedom of the town, the soldiers will march with bayonets fixed and colours flying, led by their Regimental Mascot, Private Derby XXXI, a Swaledale ram.

The band of the Regiment, who recently performed at Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and Beating Retreat on Horseguards Parade, will provide musical accompaniment.

The parade will start from 1pm marching through the streets of Tamworth and finishing in the Castle Grounds at 2pm.

Cllr Robert Pritchard, Deputy Leader of Tamworth Borough Council, said: “We are extremely proud that the Mercian Regiment will parade through the town centre on Saturday, marking their 10-year anniversary. This will be a rare experience for residents and visitors to see the regiment marching through Tamworth and is guaranteed to be the highlight of the day.

“This parade will give the opportunity to celebrate the successes of the regiment alongside the We Love Tamworth event. Mercian soldiers are renowned for their professionalism and courage, which is another reason for Tamworth to be very honoured that the regiment was formed here at the Castle Grounds.”

And if all that wasn’t enough, We Love Tamworth also coincides with the 24-day launch of the Focus 24: 24 Hours in Tamworth exhibition which has invited amateurs and professionals to submit photographs and video footage of the people, places, objects and experiences of Tamworth, at all hours of the day.

Focus 24: 24 Hours in Tamworth is part of the Arts in Unusual Spaces initiative, which has been funded by Arts Council England and will see art in all its forms popping up in unusual spaces across Tamworth during a two-year period.

For more information on Arts in Unusual Spaces, please visit the Tamworth Arts & Events website at www.tamworthartsandevents.co.uk.

The chosen photographs – a total of 24, taken by 24 different photographers - plus the new film, 24 hours in the life of Tamworth, will be exhibited for 24 days, starting on Saturday, September 2, when they will go on digital display in Ankerside Shopping Centre.

Cllr Joy Goodall, Tamworth Borough Council’s Cabinet member for Environment & Culture, said: “We are delighted to be able to host We Love Tamworth again. It has become a great day out and a firm favourite among people of all ages. Each year the event grows more popular with local residents and visitors to our town.

“This year’s event has all the much-loved features from previous years, as well as some really special extras including the opportunity to view the results of the Focus 24: 24 Hours in Tamworth project for the first time. I hope Tamworth residents will pop along and take advantage of all the family fun.”

The fun kicks off at 11am and will continue throughout the afternoon until 4pm.

More information about this, and all other outdoor events organised by Tamworth Borough Council, is available at www.tamworthartsandevents.co.uk.