Category Archives: Bloxwich Wakes

Bloxwich Wakes 2018 – in pictures

Several distinctive Pat Collins trucks
Several distinctive Pat Collins trucks

With the absence of Bloxwich Carnival this year, Pat Collins Funfair, long associated with both the carnival and Bloxwich itself, stepped in to fill the gap with a new (but actually old) event, the Bloxwich Wakes Festival, on Friday – Sunday 3rd-5th August 2018. And although the event didn’t draw the crowds that the carnival usually does, especially on Sunday, charity stallholders have reported a worthwhile turnout.

Stuart Williams of The Bloxwich Telegraph visited the wakes in brilliant sunshine on the Sunday to meet participants and take pictures for this photo feature.

Pat Collins Bloxwich Fete & Gala, Wakes Ground, 1965
Pat Collins Bloxwich Fete & Gala, Wakes Ground, 1965

The tradition of Bloxwich wakes goes back centuries, but from the late 1800s-early 1900s, Pat Collins, ‘King of Showmen’ and proprietor of the original Pat Collins Funfair, used to hold the Bloxwich Wakes, later officially known as Pat Collins Fete & Gala, here in the village every August, and it was a much-anticipated local tradition  until the Collins family left in the early 1970s.

Pat Collins Funfair is no Mickey Mouse operation!
Pat Collins Funfair is no Mickey Mouse operation!

The ‘wakes ground’ site is now the ASDA supermarket car park, but in modern times, Pat Collins Funfair has traditionally been held in the King George V Memorial Playing Fields, near to the entrance in Bealey’s Lane, Bloxwich.

Revellers were guaranteed a super welcome
Revellers were guaranteed a super welcome

The ‘new’ Bloxwich Wakes Festival was organised by the modern proprietors of the current Pat Collins Funfair, Mr Anthony Harris and family, and in the spirit of the old Bloxwich Wakes offered not only their traditional giant funfair, but also arena events on the Saturday and Sunday with live music, plus live wrestling, charity stalls and more.  Naturally, though, the real star was all the fun of the fair, as it always was with Bloxwich Wakes!

Traditional wrestling, 1970s style!
Traditional wrestling, 1970s style!

To view a larger image, just click on any of the pictures shown here.

Owen Allen and Demi Woods of Thespian Arts were amongst the performers
Owen Allen and Demi Woods of Thespian Arts were amongst the performers
Janet Cook, a fundraiser for the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal.
Janet Cook, a fundraiser for the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal.

For info on the Bloxwich Branch of the Royal British Legion, follow this link, or the RBL and the Poppy Appeal in general, via this link.

Becky Weeks, Suzanne Williams and Cheryl Jones of Walsall RSPCA
Becky Weeks, Suzanne Williams and Cheryl Jones of Walsall RSPCA

For more info on the Walsall Branch of the RSPCA, follow this link.

Bryan Tilt, fundraiser for St Giles Hospice Walsall
Bryan Tilt, fundraiser for St Giles Hospice Walsall

For more info on St Giles Hospice, follow this link.

Shelby Hillback, Sadie Allen and Owen Allen of Thespian Arts
Shelby Hillback, Sadie Allen and Owen Allen of Thespian Arts

For more info on Thespian Arts, who are based in Clayhanger, follow this link.

Donkey rides - seaside style!
Donkey rides – seaside style!
The ever-popular Alfonso Urso serves from his classic BMC ice cream van
The ever-popular Alfonso Urso serves from his classic BMC ice cream van

For more info on Alfonso & Son’s Icecream, follow this link.

Riding high on the Super Star!
Riding high on the Super Star!
Crash-bang-wallop on the Dodgems!
Crash-bang-wallop on the Dodgems!
Scream - you know you want to!
Scream – you know you want to!
Shooting Gallery and Hook a Duck
Shooting Gallery and Hook a Duck
Flash dancing on the Tagada
Flash dancing on the Tagada
The Ghost Train and bungee jumping
The Ghost Train and bungee jumping
Going for a spin on The Sizzler
Going for a spin on The Sizzler
Your chance to fly Super Star!
Your chance to fly Super Star!
Definitely a Sunday Smackdown in progress
Definitely a Sunday Smackdown in progress

All pictures copyright Stuart Williams. Persons pictured may post these images on their Facebook pages, but no other publication or commercial use is allowed without permission.

For information on future events, be sure to keep an eye on the Pat Collins Funfair Facebook page and the company website.

 

Bloxwich Wakes return as new Festival

Bloxwich Wakes Poster 2018

With the absence of Bloxwich Carnival this year, Pat Collins Funfair, long associated with both the carnival and Bloxwich itself, has stepped in to fill the gap with a new (but actually old) event, the Bloxwich Wakes Festival, on Friday – Sunday 3rd-5th August 2018.

The tradition of Bloxwich wakes goes back centuries, but from the late 1800s-early 1900s, Pat Collins, ‘King of Showmen’ and proprietor of the original Pat Collins Funfair, used to hold the Bloxwich Wakes, later officially known as Pat Collins Fete & Gala, here in the village every August, and it was a much-anticipated local tradition  until the Collins family left in the early 1970s.

The ‘wakes ground’ site is now the ASDA supermarket car park, but in modern times, Pat Collins Funfair has traditionally been held in the King George V Memorial Playing Fields, near to the entrance in Bealey’s Lane, Bloxwich.

The ‘new’ Bloxwich Wakes Festival has been organised by the modern proprietors of the current Pat Collins Funfair, Mr Anthony Harris and family, and in the spirit of the old Bloxwich Wakes will offer not only their traditional giant funfair, but also arena events on the Saturday and Sunday with live music, plus live wrestling, charity stalls and more.

Opening hours are:

  • Friday 3rd August 2018  5pm-9pm
  • Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th August 2018 11am-6pm.

Admission is free, but rides etc cost extra.

For more information, be sure to check out the Pat Collins Funfair Facebook page and the company website.