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Traditional fare to the fore in ‘Ballycastle-oh’

Auld Lammas Fair Ballycastle 29-8-11
Five years old horseman Joseph McAleenan enjoying his big day at the Auld Lammas Fair in Ballycastle Co-Antrim, The two day fair is one of the oldest in Ireland dating back to the 17th century selling everything from horses to sweet yella man. Picture Margaret McLaughlin ? please use by-line

Auld Lammas Fair Ballycastle 29-8-11 Five years old horseman Joseph McAleenan enjoying his big day at the Auld Lammas Fair in Ballycastle Co-Antrim, The two day fair is one of the oldest in Ireland dating back to the 17th century selling everything from horses to sweet yella man. Picture Margaret McLaughlin ? please use by-line

TENS of thousands of visitors flocked to the Auld Lammas Fair in Ballycastle yesterday for the annual extravaganza of Yellowman and dulse.

But the indications around midday were that the crowds were down on previous years - although stallholders were hoping showers would stay off and they would get a late afternoon surge.

The fair continues today when, once again, bargain hunters will buzz about between hundreds of stalls selling everything from clothes to toys.

But the most popular stalls yesterday were those selling the traditional Yellowman - a honeycomb sweet - and the edible seaweed, dulse.

At The Diamond in the centre of Ballycastle, the Dunne/Agnew family from Ballymena, famed for their “secret” Yellowman recipe, were again in place to welcome the crowds.

Nearby, “Dr Ian Paisley” – or more accurately comedian John McBlain kitted out in his trademark sash and black furry hat – was selling CDs and helping to put a smile on people’s faces.

At the traditional Lammas Fair dinner on Sunday night - held this year in Ballycastle Golf Club because the usual venue of the Marine Hotel has closed - there were visitors from Scotland and the Republic of Ireland.

The Auld Lammas Fair has taken place annually in Ballycastle since the seventeenth century. Celebrated on the last Monday and Tuesday in August, the fair marks the end of summer and beginning of harvest.

 

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