Appleby Horse Fair

Appleby Horse Fair in Appleby, Westmoreland, Cumbria. The Annual fair held in June is a traditional place for gypsies from all over Britain to come and trade horses, though it has become also a regular gypsy holiday as well as now a tourist attraction. Each year the sight of horses being prepared for sale by being washed in the river, brings an estimated 50,000 people to the usually sleepy Cumbrian village. The fair dates back to 1685 when King James II granted a Royal Charter allowing 'A Horse Fair next to The River Eden'.

Gypsies riding and washing their horses in the River Eden which runs through the village
A gypsy horse is washed by it's owner ready for selling. The official name of the breed favoured by Gypsies is the Irish Cob, but they are commonly known as 'Gypsy Horses'.
Horse appearing to enjoy it's dip in the river.
Gypsy men during the bidding negotiations for the sale of a horse.
A third-party 'negotiator' tries to bring a sale to a close by holding the hands of the seller and the prospective buyer and trying to make them shake on a deal by slapping their hands together whilst bargaining with both men. The deal is only sealed when the two men actually shake hands and verbally agree to the terms of the sale.
A string of gypsy horses tied up in the village centre ready to be sold.
Gypsy pictured in his traditional caravan or 'vardo'.
To attract buyers, gypsies ride their horses up and down on what they call a 'flashing'. In Appleby this is a narrow road on which horses are either ridden or driven pulling a  traditional trap. Sales are then usually conducted down by the river on the village centre.

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