Bamber's Green scarecrow festival: Residents' creations including Donald Trump, Captain Sir Tom Moore and Dorothy from Wizard of Oz impress passing motorists
Residents in Bamber's Green got into the spirit of their first ever scarecrow festival, producing a variety of straw-filled characters that even prompted passing motorists to stop and take photos.
US President Donald Trump, centenarian NHS fundraising hero Captain Sir Tom Moore and Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz were joined by Hallowe'en-themed creations such as a pumpkin-headed family, Little Miss Muffet with a big hairy spider, a witch in a tree and a scary-looking police officer.
There was also a golfing scarecrow, a fishing scarecrow, a cycling scarecrow who had crashed into a hedge and, topically, a scarecrow caught out by lockdown curfew.
Organiser Michelle Shenston said that entrants went to extraordinary lengths to produce some fantastic creations. Villagers were given five tokens each with which to vote for their favourite. The winner will be announced on Sunday.
Michelle, who has lived in the hamlet near Takeley for 11 years, said that during lockdown residents had "reclaimed" the previously overgrown green and had united to tidy it up, which in turn had strengthened the community.
"The green is technically there for the use of residents, and prior to this year it's always been very overgrown and was barely used at all," she explained. "Now we've reclaimed it, residents go out and cut the grass, we've planted wild flowers for the spring, so this festival was partly about that and being able to rebuild our community."
She said that at one time homes were rented out to airport workers, but they were now all privately owned and the community was more established.
"During lockdown we set up a group and, off the back of that, came up with this idea, something to bring a bit of joy, and it's been really good fun with lots of entrants," said Michelle.
"People have been stopping in their cars to take pictures and we've had some really varied scarecrows.
"Next year the plan will be that everybody who enters makes a donation and we'll do something for charity. We'd like to carry this on."