Melton people ‘paint the town red’ at popular annual family event

Maia and Jack Paige learn all about traditional childrens' toys with Heather Woodhouse from the Carnegie Museum at Paint The Town Red EMN-180625-125605001
Maia and Jack Paige learn all about traditional childrens' toys with Heather Woodhouse from the Carnegie Museum at Paint The Town Red EMN-180625-125605001
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The future of fledgling Melton event, Paint The Town Red, looks assured after people flocked to support it on Sunday.

It was the second edition of the annual family fun day and proved far more successful, in terms of attendance, than its 2017 debut.

Derek Simmonds and Jenny Barnes promote the Melton Centenary Trail in aid of Birch Wood Area Special School at the town's Paint The Town Red event on Sunday EMN-180625-125626001

Derek Simmonds and Jenny Barnes promote the Melton Centenary Trail in aid of Birch Wood Area Special School at the town's Paint The Town Red event on Sunday EMN-180625-125626001

Market Place and all the roads leading from it were once again packed with activities, including a dog show, singing and dancing performances, chainsaw demonstrations and a high climbing wall for children.

Sharon Astill was organising it for the first time and she was clearly pleased with the turnout, with the day clashing with England’s televised World Cup match against Panama.

She said: “I thought it was a fantastic turnout and numbers were greatly increased from last year.

“I was a bit worried with the football being on at the same time but it didn’t seem to affect us in the end.

Isabella Cook, who is six, gets a sponging from The Marquis of Waterford, aka historical re-enactment specialist Jed Jaggard, during Paint The Town Red EMN-180625-125637001

Isabella Cook, who is six, gets a sponging from The Marquis of Waterford, aka historical re-enactment specialist Jed Jaggard, during Paint The Town Red EMN-180625-125637001

“The feedback from traders and from the public has been very positive and we will absolutely be going ahead with it again next year.”

The event, which benefited from funding from Melton BID, Samworth Brothers and Melton Building Society and infrastructure support from the borough council and town estate,takes its name from the saying ‘painting the town red’, which is derived from a group of toffs led by the Marquis of Waterford daubing Melton town centre in red paint after a boozy day at the races in 1837.

Activities are concentrated in the town centre, as opposed to the parks, and many traders took the opportunity to open on a Sunday to take advantage of the extra footfall.

The Market Place area featured an arts and crafts marquee which keep youngsters amused throughout the day and down Sherrard Street a dog show proved very popular and raised £160 for the local air ambulance charity.

Stephen Hallam, MD of Melton's Dickinson and Morris Ye Olde Pork Pie Shoppe finds a woolly friend at the Paint The Town Red event EMN-180625-125554001

Stephen Hallam, MD of Melton's Dickinson and Morris Ye Olde Pork Pie Shoppe finds a woolly friend at the Paint The Town Red event EMN-180625-125554001

Animal-lovers were spoiled on Burton Street with the opportunity to get up close to Shetland ponies, sheep, chickens and guinea pigs.

High Street hosted a climbing wall and a demonstration of chaninsaw skills while Nottingham Street was lined with tombola and charity stalls.

The Melton Mowbray Toy Soldiers Band entertained the crowds, as did members of the town’s Performing Stars Academy, with singing and dancing, including a rousing performance from West Side Story. Pupils from Asfordby Hill Primary School performed with ukuleles.

Residents from Egerton Lodge enjoyed the day too. A dummy resembling The Marquis of Waterford was placed outside the Wilton Road nursing home with 44 balloons, to represent one for each resident.

Costco ladies Shaheeda Thakrar and Priscilla Dohara meet up with Hugh Brown, from Melton Livestock Market, and Colin Paige, from Round Corner Brewing at Paint The Town Red EMN-180625-125616001

Costco ladies Shaheeda Thakrar and Priscilla Dohara meet up with Hugh Brown, from Melton Livestock Market, and Colin Paige, from Round Corner Brewing at Paint The Town Red EMN-180625-125616001

“I must thank everyone who supported the event this year and helped make it such a success,” added Sharon.

“I spoke to traders on the day and there were lots of ideas put forward on how we could improve it further.

“I will do a full evaluation and look at the funding and what we can do differently next year and it may be a slightly different event next time.”

A dummy resembling The Marquis of Waterford outside Egerton Lodge nursing home in Melton during the Paint The Town Red event, with 44 balloons to represent one for each resident EMN-180626-114509001

A dummy resembling The Marquis of Waterford outside Egerton Lodge nursing home in Melton during the Paint The Town Red event, with 44 balloons to represent one for each resident EMN-180626-114509001