In May 2019 Oundle Vintage Festival took place for the first time with the three main streets of Oundle closed off for the day and filled with an antique & vintage market, a mini-railway, steam traction engines, pipe organs, classic cars and motorbikes, classic cycles, vintage farm machinery and a variety of traditional fairground rides, along with a Festival Stage featuring retro bands and vintage dancers, all surrounded by a variety of street food stalls.The night before the main event a Rock ‘n’ Roll dance also took place.
The festival event was conceived by Oundle Business Association who identified a lack of major events for a town of Oundle’s size. The festival was to act as a draw for visitors on the day, but also highlight Oundle as a year round visitor destination. This coincided with an appeal from the Friends of St Peter’s Church who were in desperate need of funds to repair the Town Clock.
A dedicated event organising group was set up that reported into the main OBA committee, with the Association assisting with banking and grants. The 2019 event not only received rave reviews from the estimated 5,000 visitors, but raised just over £10,000 for the Town Clock & Bells Repair Fund. Originally put on as a one-off, the Business Association took the decision to run the festival as a regular event following universally good feedback from festival-goers and many calls to repeat it.
Unfortunately the planed event in 2020 had to be cancelled due to the pandemic. Hopefully the event will return bigger and better than before with future proceeds being directed towards the newly established Love Oundle Fund to be overseen by Oundle Business Association with the aim of providing grants that will improve the fabric of the town for the benefit of residents & visitors. For latest news keep an eye out at: www.oundlevintagefestival.co.uk