FAMILIES braved the cold Bank Holiday winds to enjoy a day of country and western fun at the Highworth May Day Market.

The popular event, now in its 10th year, had a Wild West theme – with children seen sporting Stetsons, twirling toy pistols and wearing their sheriff star badges.

At the end of the day, teams from Highworth bars took each other on in the fiercely competitive pub challenge.

“It’s going to be very wet,” joked organiser Sandra Rendall, describing it as a test of brute strength.

Jenny Davidson, 37, of the Highworth Hotel team, looked slightly nervous: “We’re going to do our best.” Colleague John Bolger, 35, was more forthright: “We’re going to win.”

In the end, it was the Goldfinger Tavern team that won the day, with a group from the Saracen's Head coming in second place. 

The knock-out competition saw players having to carry buckets of water between their knees, munch their way through a tomato sauce-filled doughnut, pick the sausages out a tub of bangers and baked beans, and grab a chilli out a cream-covered jelly - using just their teeth.

Sandra, chairman of the organising committee, said: "The crowd was going bananas for it."

Druid Rev Nicholas Woodley of the Order of the Oath, wearing an American Indian headdress, helped lead the traditional Jack in the Green procession: “I love Highworth,” said the head druid and high priest. “It’s one of the best villages in England. I can walk into the Co-op in full druid robes and everybody will just welcome you. People here are very inclusive.”

Stalls packed the High Street, while families enjoyed knife-throwing workshops, performances from Voice Kids contestant Lilia Slattery and an entertaining show of lassoing and whip cracking from “English Cowboy” Pecan Pete.

Steph McQuitty, 32, with daughter Clara, said: “It’s a really lovely community day. We can see all the different local groups, like the pre-schools. It’s lovely. Clara loves seeing the animals and the different acts.”

Cathy Talmage was on the Eastrop Infant School PTA stall, selling customised teddy bears to raise cash for new play equipment at the school: “It’s been brilliant, really busy. The children absolutely love the bears.”