The owner of the iconic Carters Steam Fair is hoping to keep the collection of vintage funfair rides together as the search for a new home continues.
White Waltham-based Carters Steam Fair has been a staple in Maidenhead since it was founded in 1977.
The Carter family traveled the country with the fair’s range of vintage funfair rides for 45 years.
The fair made its final tour last year after Joby Carter announced it was looking for a permanent home.
In an update this week, Joby told the Advertiser he is looking to sell the collection on to a heritage site with his main goal being to keep the complete collection together.
He said: “We’ve always known in the end that we could do with a permanent home, but we haven’t really had the site or the capital to buy it.
“The pandemic showed us another way where we’ve got to enjoy the weekends and see our kids and we kind of couldn’t recover from that really.
“This time last year, we decided to sell it.”
He added: “We were hoping something would come out of the woodwork and we have been in talks with different people, but it’s about finding the right fit.”
Joby said they had already been in talks with the National Trust and an unnamed museum, but emphasized that the process had been tricky because the team wanted to make sure the collection stayed together.
Joby said: “We’re going down the road less traveled, trying to keep it together because it’s a historical collection of rides, wagons, and transport.
“You couldn’t put it together now if you had all the money in the world.”
Vintage fairground art has become increasingly high on the endangered heritage list and the Carters Steam Fair has become part of the history of Maidenhead.
Joby keeps the collection close to his heart.
He said he hopes to continue to be involved with the collection, perhaps as an artistic director, even after it sells on.
Carter’s main attraction has now become its signwriting, which attracts people from all over the world to ‘learn the art and craft of traditional signwriting’.
It is also planning a sale of surplus equipment on July 9.
For more information visit charterssteamfair.co.uk