STEAM enthusiasts will be disappointed to learn that one of the region’s most popular events has fallen victim to uncertainties regarding the future coronavirus restrictions.

Since its humble beginnings in 1985, the Hunton Steam Gathering has grown dramatically in size, attracting visitors and exhibitors from across the UK. Typically, over the weekend, the two-day event sees over 10,000 people visit this annual extravaganza.

Conceived by former Hunton landlord David Robinson, it is now organised by an entirely volunteer committee and operates in a non-profit capacity. It is nationally recognised as an important event by the steam engine community.

After holding a virtual meeting, to discuss the viability of the 35th Gathering, the HSG committee originally hoped to delay a decision until more was known on the coronavirus situation. However with the date of the event nearing ever-quickly, the committee reluctantly decided they had no option but to cancel the show.

Spokesman Ben Jobling said: “The primary concern of the committee is the health and well-being of all the event’s supporters and visitors. Irrespective of the unquantifiable financial risk to a solely volunteer team, we consider that we are left no option but to postpone the 35th Hunton Steam Gathering until September 11 and 12, 2021.

“This decision has not been taken lightly and we are all extremely disappointed to have to make this announcement. We thank you for your continued support. Please stay safe and we look forward to welcoming you all in 2021.”

Following the success of the 2019 Gathering, rated as the biggest and best event in the show’s history, earlier this year the Committee made donations to local charities and good causes totalling £10,450.