Book your seats for Corby Pole Fair movie screenings - for free

The film will be premiered on June 24

Monday, 7th June 2021, 7:00 am

A film documenting the Corby Pole Fair will get the red carpet treatment this month as Corby Pole Fair - the movie - premieres at the town's cinema.

Archives have been scoured and using film footage gathered from home movies, newsreels and television broadcasts, HD Media CIC have collated the visual archive.

Corby Pole Fair is a major community celebration, which takes places in the Old Village area of Corby every 20 years and is said to have been celebrated in some form for over a thousand years.

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Dancers perform in The Jamb in 1982

Ready for for next year, organisers Made With Many have joined with HD Media CIC and the Corby Pole Fair steering group in the lead up to the big weekend in June 2022.

Denise Westwood, Chair of Corby Pole Fair Steering group, said : “This film is the culmination of lots of hard work and research, as well as a lot of help from Corby people with their memories. I am so excited that it is being shown to a wide audience and that it will then exist as an archive for future generations to refer to in the future.

"Our Pole Fair exists as a celebration only every 20 years and there are therefore many people in Corby who were either too young to remember the last one, or have come to join our community more recently. We hope that seeing it will enthuse lots of people to come to help.

"The Fair exists not just to entertain people but to include them in its creation and enjoyment.”

Corby Silver Band parades through the Old Village

The archive film about past Corby Pole Fairs will be premiered on June 24 in a series of free community screenings thanks to generous support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the National Lottery Community Fund.

Over the last year, local filmmakers HD Media CIC have been busy researching, collating and editing photography, film footage and personal memories of the Pole Fair from 1902 onwards. This includes rare footage, which has been digitised to the highest standard, which documents the traditions, frivolity and community spirit of the Pole Fair.

There are numerous traditions that take place at every fair, including a dawn parade with a reading of the town's charter, floral gateways to the old village area of Corby, and a greasy pole competition. At the celebration of the Pole Fair in Corby every person entering the village has to pay a small toll or face the stocks. Previous fairs have also included markets, performances, historical re-enactments and a large fun fair.

Judy Caine from filmmakers HD Media CIC said: "It was a privilege to delve into a treasure trove of photography, film and precious artefacts. The first-hand accounts from people who attended the Pole Fair between 1947 and 2002 lend authenticity to the film, alongside specially recorded, original music from 1585 to 2002, which has been all performed on authentic instruments in period settings.”

Elizabethan costumes in 1982

Public screenings will take place at 3pm, 4pm, 5pm, 6pm, 7pm and 8pm on Thursday, June 24 at the Savoy Cinema in Corby.

Booking is advised via madewithmany.eventbrite.co.uk or by calling 01536 267895 between 9.30am and 3pm from Tuesday to Friday.

The Corby Pole Fair steering will be on hand to talk to people about the history of the event, have some of the archives on show and be ready for suggestions for the fair.

For project updates, follow the Corby Pole Fair Facebook page at or visit www.madewithmany.org.

Getting to grips with the pole at the Pole Fair