King's Lynn Mart Fair

King's Lynn Mart

Traditionally the opening to the travelling season, King's Lynn Mart has a special place in the hearts of the travelling showpeople. During the later half of the nineteenth century the King's Lynn Mart was a spectacular event in which Frederick Savage of King's Lynn displayed his latest roundabouts and fairground attractions to the showmen. This display of new machines and amusements continues today with the showmen vying to display the latest amusements. In 1897 Randall Williams became the first showman to display moving pictures to the fairgoing public at the Valentine Day fair. By the following year four cinematograph booths were on display.

The first recorded Charter granted to the town was in 1204 in the reign of King John. However the Charter marking the Valentine's Day fair was granted by Henry VIII in 1537. The site of the fair is the Tuesday Market Place with the Mayor and Chairman of the Markets Committee accompanied by local dignataries and officials of the Showmen's Guild performing an opening ceremony preceeded by a blessing on the fair and the showpeople who attend it.