RESIDENTS of Pershore and the surrounding villages are being invited to join in the fun of its award-winning annual festival by using their skills and knowledge to help ensure its continuing success.

Organisers of the Pershore Plum Festival are appealing to all residents, and particularly newcomers to the town, to get involved with the event which starts in July with a party where the Plum Princess is crowned and reaches a crescendo on the August Bank Holiday weekend with the Plum Fayre.

Plum festival committee chairman Angela Tidmarsh explained that although a lot of businesses get involved, the people running those businesses can only offer a limited amount of time to help with the festival.

“A lot of people are involved but when it comes to the hands on work, they are not there all the time to do it. The actual number of people who do it are about six,” she said.

She added that getting involved with the plum festival is great fun and a golden opportunity for everyone – especially young people and particularly students, to gain valuable experience that would look good on their CV or be part of placements they need for their courses.

“There are lots of opportunities for people to fulfil their interests. There are so many elements to the plum festival – administration, stewarding, social media, customer relations. I am sure there is something to interest everyone.

“The plum festival is such a fun event, the Bank Holiday weekend is the highlight of Pershore’s calendar and it is celebrating our heritage.

“These things do not happen without people getting involved. An event of that magnitude does not happen without volunteers.”

The committee has organised a Pershore Plum Festival open day on Saturday February 11 from 10.30am to 3pm at Number 8, High Street, when people can meet members of the committee, find out what goes on behind the scenes, discover ways of getting involved and enjoy the entertainment being laid on.

Mrs Tidmarsh said the town’s population is expanding due to new house building and the committee is hoping to encourage new residents to get involved in helping to run the festival.

To find out more about this year’s Plum Festival visit, email or ring Angela Tidmarsh on 01386 565373.

Last year the Pershore Plum Festival won the 2016 Visit Worcestershire Awards for Excellence (run by Herefordshire and Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce) in the Best Festival and Events (Community) category. It had previously won in 2011, 2012 and 2013.

• The plum festival dates back to at least 1920 when it was part of the Pershore Flower Show and an advertising poster that year described it as “The Largest Plum Show on Earth”. More than 90 years later the town is striving to recreate this spectacle.