Plea to save Michelmersh pumpkin contest

Daily Echo: A past winner with his entries at The Bear and Ragged Staff pumpkin contest. A past winner with his entries at The Bear and Ragged Staff pumpkin contest.

It’s been a part of village life for 47 years, but a popular pumpkin growing contest may go to seed unless new organisers can be found.

It was in 1967 that the landlord of the Bear and Ragged Staff, in Michelmersh, near Romsey, first challenged locals to see who could grow the biggest pumpkin.

Since then the annual event, run each October by The Bear and Ragged Staff Pumpkin Club, has raised thousands for local charities.

As well as pumpkins the competition has been widened to include marrows and other vegetables and novelty classes for children.

Following 2013’s show, which was very well attended, the current organising committee reluctantly decided that the event would be their last.

But rather than declare the event at an end, it was decided to search for another group to take over the running of the show.

Anyone interested should call Phil Hutchins on 01794 368117.

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