Carters Steam Fair

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Carters Steam Fair
Origin
Country United Kingdom
Founder(s) John and Anna Carter
Year founded 1976
Information
Operator(s) The Carter Family and associates
Status Touring during 2016 season
Traveling or static? Traveling
Home base / winter quarters Adjacent to White Waltham Airfield, near Maidenhead, in Berkshire
Number of rides Around 19 (dependent on site/ location)
Restrictions? Height and age restrictions dependent on ride
Other attractions? Food and drink stalls, sideshows and games
Facilities? No toilets provided by Carters, car parking based on site facilities
Contact address Carters Yard, White Waltham, Near Maidenhead, Berkshire SL6 3LW
Website http://www.carterssteamfair.co.uk/

Carters Steam Fair (no apostrophe is used in the name) is a travelling vintage fair. Founded in 1977[1] by John Carter (1942-2000), this family business is now managed by the second generation of Carters.

Carters operate and maintain a large collection of vintage rides and sidestalls, ranging in date from the 1870s to the 1960s, and every season they are travelled with vintage heavy lorries and traditional showman’s living wagons. The fair provides an opportunity to enjoy historic equipment and artwork.[2]

Their operating base and restoration workshops are immediately adjacent to White Waltham Airfield, near Maidenhead, in Berkshire.

Steam-powered gallopers (left); steam yachts (right)

Rides and attractions[edit]

201604101256 Chelmsford Central Park Carters Steam Fair Swingboats
201604101256 Chelmsford Central Park Carters Steam Fair Swingboats
Steam Boats aka Steam Yachts at Prospect Park
Steam Boats aka Steam Yachts at Prospect Park

Carters Steam Fair is a travelling collection of rare working funfair rides, As at April 2016, currently touring rides with the Fair are:

Ride Height Restriction
Austin Cars Suitable for pre-school children up to the age of about 6 or 7 only
Train Ride There are no height restrictions, so adults may travel with younger children, if required
Toytown Suitable for toddlers and pre-school children up to the age of 5 or 6
Mini Octopus Suitable for toddlers and pre-school children up to the age of 5 or 6
Scenic Dobbies Suitable for toddlers and pre-school children up to the age of 5 or 6
Big Swingboats Must be over 1.1 metres (3.6 feet) tall to ride
Little Swingboats No
Jubilee Steam Gallopers No
Jungle Thriller Ark No
Chair-o-Plane Must be over 1.1 metres (3.6 feet) tall to ride
Steam Yachts Must be over 1.05 metres (3.4 feet) tall to ride middle yellow seats, all other seats may be ridden by anyone over 1.2 metres (3.9 feet)
Dive-Bomber Must be over 1.1 metres (3.6 feet) tall only when accompanied by an adult, or those over 1.3 meters (4.2 feet) unaccompanied
Giant Octopus Must be over 1.1 metres (3.6 feet) tall to ride
Dodgems Must be over 1.1 metres (3.6 feet) tall to ride


Switch from cash to tokens[edit]

Harry Hill, as depicted on the Carters Steam Fair 2015 issue coin token
Harry Hill, as depicted on the Carters Steam Fair 2015 issue coin token

In 2014, Carters Steam Fair moved from taking cash payments at each attraction to a token coin system. As at April 2016, there have been two distinct minting productions featuring different designs. Both designs feature the representation of a Galloper ride horse on the reverse, along with the texts "Carters Steam Fair", "No cash value", and "No refund value" around the image on the coin's edge. Additionally, the text "1 Token" appears across the horse's neck horizontally in a rectangular box. All text is presented in block letters.

2014 Token Obverse[edit]

The obverse of the 2014 coin token features a representation of the comedian Harry Hill, wearing a paper Christmas cracker hat. Originally Hill was going to design an image himself for this first minting, but in the event he was also about to put on a stage show and was too busy to fit it in and so with his blessing, Carters put his portrait on the coin instead.

2015 Token Obverse[edit]

The obverse of the 2014 coin token features a representation of the late John Carter whom in 1977 purchased the Steam Gallopers along with his wife Anna, and thus started what was to become Carters Steam Fair.[1]

In popular culture[edit]

Models[edit]

A number of die-cast models featuring the name of and / or reproducing vehicles used by Carters Steam Fair have been produced;

A line-up of showman's engines, Pinkney's Green (May 2007)

Television[edit]

  • Antiques Roadshow, Series 29, Episode 2 (BBC, 2006)[7]
  • Fairground Attractions (Channel 5 Broadcasting Ltd, 2014)[8][9]
  • Midsomer Murders (ITV, 2015)[10]

Film[edit]

External audio
Audio soundscape of Carters Steam Fair
Carters Steam Fair visits Hersham in Surrey: among the general background hubbub, rock'n'roll plays on a waltzer ride while a barrel organ plays in front of a dive-bomber ride.
From here retrieved 23 Jun 2010

The Fair has been featured in many films[10] including;

Music[edit]

The Kaiser Chiefs Meanwhile Up in Heaven music video was filmed on the fair in 2014.[10]

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Bartrip, P.W.J., The state and the steam boiler in Britain International review of social history 25, 1980, 77-105, Government intervention and the role of interest groups in 19th Century Britain in regard to stationary boilers.

David Whyley Austin automobiles, 1998, Volume looks at Austin children's pedal cars of the 1950s, including the Pathfinder racing model, illustrated with manufacturer's photographs.

Adrian G. Shaw with Anna Carter, A season with Carters Steam Fair, words by Anna Carter, soft-cover book of black and white photography by Adrian G Shaw, documenting a season on the road with Carters Steam Fair, 60 pages, paperback, illustrated throughout.

Paul Braithwaite, Arcades and slot machines: with an A-Z of British manufacturers, 1870-1970; edited by John Carter; photography by Brian Steptoe., White Waltham:Carters Books 1997, Lists known makers between 1870 and 1970 and describes particular models, features photographs from Carters Steam Fair's arcade machine collection, 105 pages, paperback, illustrated throughout.

Paul Braithwaite, John Carter's Jubilee Steam Gallopers: a souvenir of one hundred years of riding for pleasure!, With John Carter. The story of Carters Jubilee Steam Gallopers, from manufacture to the present day, including detailed information and illustrations of its restoration and history, Maidenhead:J. Carter and Sons, 1995, 64 pages, paperback, illustrated throughout, ISBN (pbk.) BNB GB9589409.

Paul Braithwaite, Swings, Park Swings, Overboats and Over The Tops, Edited by John Carter. Covers the style and manufacture of these types of fairground rides, Maidenhead:J. Carter and Sons, 1996, 28 pages, paperback, illustrated throughout, ISBN (pbk.) BNB GBA336684.

Kevin Scrivens, Carters Jungle Thriller: The lost ark / compiled by Kevin Scrivens and Stephen Smith, The story of Carters Jungle Thriller Ark, illustrated with clear photographs of the restoration process and the build-up of the ride, Maidenhead: Carters Books, 2006, 37 pages, paperback, illustrated throughout, ISBN (pbk.) BNB GBA907362

Anna Carter, Carters: No 1 For Family Fun, Introducing Carters Steam Fair, from its history to its rides. 40 pages, paperback, illustrated throughout.

John Carter and Anna Carter, Putting fun back into funfair, Maidenhead: Carters Steam Fair, 1994?

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "About Carters Steam Fair". Carters Steam Fair Official Site. 
  2. ^ "Carters Rides & Attractions". www.carterssteamfair.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-18. 
  3. ^ "Corgi 06601 1/43 Morris 1000 Carters". Osborn's Models. 5 February 2016. 
  4. ^ "Corgi 06601 Carters Morris Minor Van – Diecast Devon". www.diecastdevon.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-22. 
  5. ^ "Oxford Diecast Morris J Ice Cream San Remo Carters Steam Fair - 1:76 S". OxfordDiecast. Retrieved 2016-04-22. 
  6. ^ "More J-type model news : J-Type Van". Retrieved 2016-04-22. 
  7. ^ "Carters Steam Fair, Series 29, Antiques Roadshow - BBC One". BBC. Retrieved 2016-04-15. 
  8. ^ "Fairground Attractions - Channel 5". Channel 5. Retrieved 2016-04-15. 
  9. ^ "rare-pedal-cars-join-superb-steam-fair-fleet". Classic and Sportscar. 
  10. ^ a b c "Carters Ride and Fair Hire". www.carterssteamfair.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-15. 

External links[edit]

External links - Video[edit]