Town centre to shut to raise £20k for stopped clock on Northamptonshire’s tallest spire

The Oundle Vintage Festival group NNL-190322-160348005
The Oundle Vintage Festival group NNL-190322-160348005

A vintage festival will bring Oundle to a standstill as local people try to raise nearly £20,000 to repair the town’s iconic clock and church bells.

The first ever Oundle Vintage Festival will take place on Saturday, May 18, and will see the whole town centre taken over by an array of vintage displays and entertainment.

St Peter's clock is under threat NNL-190322-155329005

St Peter's clock is under threat NNL-190322-155329005

The free to enter festival it is being organised in an effort to raise funds to repair the town clock and bells which have ceased working.

The famous church spire at St Peter’s in Oundle is the tallest in Northamptonshire at 210ft, but the once impressive clock on it has stopped working and the bells within the tower no longer ring out the Westminster chimes.

Now, a dedicated group of volunteers from the local business community have come together for the town to put on a brand new event to raise the funds to replace the clock’s automatic winding system, fix the bell mechanism and refurbish the weathered clock face.

The three main streets in the centre of historic Oundle (West Street, New Street and The Market Place) will be closed off and filled with attractions including an antique and vintage market, a 100ft mini-railway, steam traction engines, pipe organs, classic cars and

motorbikes, classic cycles, vintage farm machinery and a variety of traditional fairground rides including a huge helter skelter. There will be live music all day on the festival stage which will feature retro bands and vintage dancers surrounded by a variety of street food stalls.

Over at St Peter’s church, Tower Tours are offered for those with a head for heights (advance booking only). Children will be able to send their teddy bears up the church tower in order to be launched off attached to parachutes.

A Rock ‘n’ Roll dance featuring the T-100’s will take place at St Peter’s on the Friday night.

Philip Amps, festival organising committee chair, said: “Oundle will have seen nothing like this before set within the historic streets. There really will be something for everyone young or old, plus entry and parking are totally free!

“With the town set to be awash with vintage sounds, colour and activities, we encourage visitors to come over to Oundle and get in to the spirit - vintage dress is optional.”

There is detailed information online here