Haslemere Fringe Festival and why we’ve never been before

It’s (allegedly) Summer. ‘Tis the season for fetes, fairs and festivals. What fun! Or rather, what fun? If you have a child who is all to easily over stimulated then the summer events season can be hard work. We’ve had mixed results with summer fairs . When Oscar was younger they always resulted in at least one of us leaving in screaming tears. And over the years that’s made us wary. But I’ve said it before, it’s not up to us to just assume what Oscar can and can’t handle, what he will or won’t enjoy. Regardless of his Autism, he changes all the time and if we don’t keep giving him the opportunity to try things, how will he, or we, ever know what works and what doesn’t? It’s for him to tell us if he likes something or not. Which is why we decided to go to our local summer fair, the Haslemere Fringe Festival (otherwise known as Lion Fest) today.

We’ve never gone along before, for various reasons. Firstly, it’s on a local green which is flanked on two sides by busy roads, which scares the bejaysus out of me. Secondly it’s just so busy, what if he can’t cope? Yep, I think quite a lot of not attending has been to do with my fear of the unknown and, if I’m honest, of my inability to control the situation. And that’s not fair on Oscar. We walked past the festival being set up several times this week and Oscar was most interested. He told me it was ‘a party’ and that he could see ‘ladders’. He also told me he wanted to ‘go to the party’. This year they had fenced the entire operation in, meaning I only needed to fear the unknown element 😉 . And that’s my problem and not his. So today we went.

We nearly had a false start, as after walking down there and him getting very excited to ‘pay the lady’, we realised we didn’t have enough cash. We waited while Ben ran off to get some and while waiting is not Oscar’s strong suit, and he did get a little upset, it did also give him a chance to check the site out from the other side of the fence. By the time we’d paid to get in he knew exactly which ride he wanted to go on first. And so he did.


He loved this ride and went on it twice. Once in a helicopter and once in a plane.

He then decided the Big Wheel was next, however I could see he needed the loo. He’s getting quite good at giving me signals when he needs to go and today he also announced he needed the ‘bathroom’. As we’d gone sans nappy today, we ran (and he held on) until we reached the other end of the fayre, where he had his first experience of a urinal (with a little help from daddy!). What a guy! When he was done he headed straight back to the Big Wheel, which he announced he wanted to go on with Daddy. And when your child asks like that, you pack away your fear of heights and you do it. Thank you Ben!

Oscar looked so happy the whole time he was on the Big Wheel.

Wave to Mummy! Oscar looked so happy the whole time he was on the Big Wheel.

Then as soon as that was done he headed off to the inflatable slide and then the bouncy castle. What larks!

He he comes!

He he comes! Happy Boy

But my favourite moment of the afternoon has to be when he announced he wanted to go to ‘the farm’. I wasn’t sure when he meant, until I remembered we’d seen a music tent near the loos, with bales of hay for seating. He happily led the way and we were confident enough to let him run ahead without needing to be holding on to him. We sat in the tent and watched the young girl singing. Oscar also told us she was ‘playing a guitar’. Which she was.

I guarantee this is cutest picture you'll see today

I guarantee this is cutest picture you’ll see today

Mummy and daddy enjoying the music too!

Mummy and daddy enjoying the music too!

One of the hardest parts was leaving. We softened the blow by going home in stages, first to the park where he had a great time sliding, swinging and playing on the roundabout with a new friend. Then on the way home we stopped into Dylan’s Ice Cream. I’d won a competition to design a flavour for the festival and my prize was free ice cream. Thank you very much! My winning entry was Lion Bar (for Lion Fest geddit!) flavour, and I tell you it has ruined me for other flavours. Delicious!

Chocolate, Caramel, Wafers and Rice Crispies. Oh. My. Gawd!

Chocolate, Caramel, Wafers and Rice Crispies. Oh. My. Gawd!

Going to Haslemere Fringe Festival was a bit of a spur of the moment decision, not something I do often with Oscar. But today it worked. Yes it was expensive to get in, just to pay for him to go on the few rides and not really enjoy any of the other things on offer such as the live bands or the market stalls. But do you know, he had an unbelievably good time, with waiting and queuing and running but not running off and laughing and big smiles. Oscar won’t necessarily smile when he’s having fun, but I can tell you now, he doesn’t smile if he’s not. And today he did. Loads.



  1. Awww so pleased to hear you had a fab time! Some days it works, some it doesn’t, but you’re so right that we need to remember to keep on trying. You’ve reminded me of lots of fun days out we’ve had in the past! 😌

    • mrssavageangel says:

      And this is the thing! Some days it does work and some days not, but unless we try we’re never going know what today is! 🙂

  2. jphowze says:

    Love all these images. I totally agree with Steph — some days it works, some days it doesn’t!

  3. Oh it sounds like you all had a wonderful time – well done you for facing your own fears (I know that is so tough) and giving yourselves the opportunity to experience this! #sharethejoy

  4. Sounds like you had an amazing time there and little one had a fun too. #MarvMondays

  5. Sounds like it was total fun for the little one #MarvMondays

  6. Looks like a great day. Thanks for sharing for #marvmondays

  7. Aww lovely pictures and looks like a great day – that slide looks fab! Well done for braving it and enjoying this family day together x #ablogginggoodtime

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Thank you so much! It was a lovely experience and one that’s given me the confidence to try more things!

  8. You know some days you just have to go for it don’t you? It won’t always work but the days it does are SO special and this looks like one of the best for you! And can I just say AWESOME choice for an ice-cream flavour?? Thanks for joining us at #sharethejoy x

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Hahah thank you Michelle. It was delicious! You’re so right. So much of life is taking risks. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t but if you don’t try you’ll never know!

  9. twotinyhands says:

    Wow, you must have been so proud of him to have enjoyed what he did. Amazing stuff, your fears this time were quashed. Love the ice cream flavour. Me please! #ablogginggoodtime

  10. awww that looked like great fun and awesome icecream and you look so happy and pleased!

    Thanks for linking to #ablogginggoodtime

  11. Lovely to hear about a successful and fun day out. #spectrumsunday

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Thank you Lynne. I think to important to remember the good days to get you through the not so good ones 😊

  12. Love this, and I know just how much days like this mean to you. It also sounds like he is talking more and that must make you want to do a happy dance hearing it! So pleased you had a fab day beaut

    Stevie xxx #PicknMix

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Thanks sweetie. It really does! The sentences are coming thick and fast at the moment! And the following instructions has begun too (still a way to go but it’s a start! 😊) xxx

Speak Your Mind