Organisers of Manea Gala are holding an emergency meeting on Wednesday (January 22) in a bid to secure the popular event’s future.
The gala, which is in its 59th year, faces being cancelled this summer unless more volunteers come forward to help.
Current committee chairman Kevin Keil explained there are currently five or six people doing all the work leading up to the event, and that is not enough when it comes time to set up for the day, or for other events now staged by the Gala Committee - such as the Christmas lights and Christmas Fayre.
Mr Keil said: “We have plenty of funds, and plenty of ideas, but just not the necessary hands to help. I’m quite prepared to freeze the bank accounts until more people come forward to take it over again.”
He said the real issue is with preparation for events and he is hoping tonight’s meeting will see people offering to become a “friend” to Manea Gala. This would mean agreeing to help in the lead up to events, particularly the gala. ‘Friends’ would not have to attend the monthly committee meetings, but would simply be committing to giving a few hours when needed.
There is also a need for at least two or three new committee members to help spread the load of organising, what is considered one of Fenland’s premier annual events. Meeting are held on the second Tuesday of the month and last around two hours.
“There are only a handful of us, and we have plenty of ideas, but it would be good to have more people so that different viewpoints can be shared,” said Kevin, who has been chairman for the past two or three years.
“If we can get a bank of names of people willing to spend a few hours in the days leading up to the gala helping to set up, as well as those willing to help on the day, then it will ease the load and ensure the gala’s future,” he said.
Tonight’s meeting is at Manea Royal British Legion from 7pm.