A LOCAL charity has hosted the first ever Chineham and Sherfield Park Scarecrow Trail over the weekend.

Basingstoke & District Disability Forum (BDDF) welcomed over 500 families attending, with people travelling as far as Reading, Andover and Bracknell.

The event was organised by a small team led by new chairperson Ani Spalding, whose idea it was to host the event.

Ani told The Gazette: “2020 has been a difficult year for all charities, our event was primarily to raise awareness of BDDF within the local community, whilst enabling the public to enjoy a family friendly walk with the scarecrows providing the entertainment.

“Thank you to the community for the incredible support shown, the passion and talent put into the displays and for making this event a success!”

There were 96 Scarecrows to be found throughout Chineham and Sherfield Park, which was a trail of over 6 miles.

The event has been embraced by residents who were keen to share their views on social media.

One wrote: “I loved making my scarecrow (gave me something to do in the evenings during lockdown) and my three-year old has never walked so much in a weekend.”

Another said: “In 20+ years of living in Chineham I’ve never seen this amount of people walking (and cycling) around”.

The Mayor, Cllr Diane Taylor and husband Dr Andy Taylor made an appearance on Saturday.

Volunteers helped to run stalls selling the maps and raffle tickets throughout the weekend at Christ Church Chineham, Four Lanes School and Sherfield Park Community Centre.

Trophies were awarded for the ‘best in show’, ‘funniest’, ‘most imaginative’, ‘most social media likes’ and ‘best street’ as voted for by the public.

The trophies were sponsored by Loddon Properties.