This film is part of Free

May Fair

Can you spot a certain Nobody amongst the grown-up babies in the May Fair parade?

Amateur film 1960 5 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for Northern Ireland Screen


Horses take over the main street and the sounds of bumper cars compete with the gospel meeting at the May Fair. Fancy dress and fairground rides steal the show despite the sober song of the congregation. This enchanting portrait of Ballyclare’s annual fete was created by local resident and beloved film maker Archie Reid. This is just a taste of his treasure trove of films.

The Ballyclare May Fair is one of Ireland’s last remaining horse fairs. It began in 1757 and still takes place in late May each year. The main street is sanded down for the benefit of the horses’ hooves. Now a weeklong event, modern entertainment joins traditions like hypnotising chickens and choosing the May Fair Queen.