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Horse fair returns to Millstreet

Carnival atmosphere returns to the town after Beast from the East cancelled the spring fair


Favourable autumnal weather provided the perfect backdrop for all-comers to enjoy the latest staging of the age old Millstreet Horse Fair last Sunday.

The Millstreet fair comes twice annually and the latest undertaking was welcomed by hundreds who convened on the north west Cork town and compensated for the cancelled March staging which was hit by the Beast From The East that brought snow and ice.

In olden days the fair ran over two days but in more modern times it's become a one day standing and now its regular Sunday slot ensures the continued success of its rendezvous for many hundreds of enthusiasts from across the south west region.

As has been the trend in recent years, the number of equine stock were down in the assembly of cobs, ponies, horses to donkeys and trotters that convened on the Fair Field Car Park.

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However, buyers were in attendance and earned a positive response to those that made journeys from various parts of Cork, Kerry and Limerick.

Amongst the buyers present on the lookout for stock were Miley Cash, Michael Darcy and Paddy Cross. Miley Cash is well known in equine circles - the affable Co Offaly native is one of the largest buyers of horses in the country. Indeed, the Cash family rarely misses a horse fair, from Spancil Hill to Puck, regularly coming to Millstreet over the past 60 years.

"In many cases, owners are tired of travelling to fairs and not getting buyers. Many of the horses I purchase go to continental Europe," said Miley.

A number of bids from the buyers in attendance resulted in a number of transactions with favourable prices for the vendors raising from €500 to €2,000 for a three year old. And from a traditional fair dating to the early years of the last century, all the associated trappings were again evident.

Main Street and the Town Square were regailed in a carnival atmosphere as hordes of visitors viewed and purchased the diverse array of products from an array of street traders.

And as the skies darkened come early afternoon, it was time to move on and get indoors and view the All Ireland Football Finals on TV.