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I have been an enthusiast, a volunteer and a devoted customer of the EEC Fair for many years and I am just delighted that Caroline has snatched victory from the jaws of defeat by making this year’s Fair a virtual one.

I am also an ardent supporter of ABF The Soldier’s Charity, whose work reaches out to every area of the Armed Forces, when and where it is needed most. Wars and conflicts leave trails of destruction for years after the battles are just lines in a history book and The Soldier’s Charity repairs as much of the damage as it humanly can. Our soldiers have faced, do face and will face great dangers and they have made and will make personal sacrifice so that we, the general public, are protected. I am so happy to support a Charity that looks after these people. They deserve our dedicated support a hundred times over.

Charities have been hard hit by coronavirus and the UK lockdown. Small businesses, and particularly the ones that use Fairs, Events and markets to sell their goods and products have had their traditional outlets shut down for months. Some have found ways to sell within the government guidelines but the vast majority have been left stranded in a commercial desert. I am therefore all the more thrilled that the EEC Fair has opened some of the doors for us, the eager customers, to get back into a bit of retail, raise some much-needed funds and, at the same time, support all these hard-working stallholders. I love what they sell – it’s original, inventive, creative and often niche. And, to use that old phrase – it’s not on the high street. I love to find something different, cleverly sourced by an imaginative trader and the beauty of a Virtual Fair is that someone has done all the work pooling all this passion, inspiration and resourcefulness onto one online platform especially for me! I have a ten-day window to peruse an incredible array of goods and products and I will be thrilled to discover them. Sometimes the Internet seems just too big to bother chasing things down, but here I have the equivalent of a bespoke shopping mall for the discerning shopper all within easy reach of a click of my mouse. After months of lockdown, this is just what the doctor ordered….

By Ally Cardozo

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