Vintage Fair

Fairs are very much part of summer. The tradition of fairs goes back centuries and you most likely have enjoyed your share of turns on a Ferris wheel, played a rigged game of sorts (insert your favorite version of the song "I've Got a Lovely Bunch of Coconuts" here), or enjoyed a treat like cotton candy. Whether they are spread across a field with elaborate rides, pop up on your street, or a occur in the manner of a local town fête, many generations have enjoyed these traditions and British Pathé supplies the proof with footage throughout the 1900s.

I have curated a collection of my favorites below. Fairs have played a part of culture, an amusement to distract, which you can see from the footage from World War I. Most of the clips are British, but the smiles captured within each frame are shared state-side as well. I hope you enjoy these as much as me. Feel free to share your favorite fair memories in the comments below. I, myself, am partial to the merry-go-round, especially when they were faster and you could grab the rings.

Fairs For The Fair (1928)


Kursaal Rides (1951)


Chelsea Fair (1914-1918)


Old Time Steam Fair (1964)

Houghton Regis Fair (1957)


'heigh Ho' Come To The Fair (1930)


Fair Enough! (1960)