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The popular Sunday fairs had been organised by Lindy Berkman of Pig and Whistle Promotions for 25 years, but were abandoned last year when the organiser could not agree contractual terms with the then management of the venue, Alexandra Palace Trading Ltd.

Hopes that Ms Berkman could come to an agreement with Firoka Ltd, who took over management of Alexandra Palace earlier this year, proved unfounded and the five Ally Pally fairs a year ceased with seemingly little chance of revival.

However, last week Peter Barrows of Norfolk-based Nelson Fairs told ATG that he had successfully agreed terms with Firoka and that he would hold three fairs at Alexandra Palace next year, on April 13, September 7 and November 23.

Mr Barrows puts together well-thought-of fixtures at Newmarket Racecourse and Gresham’s Holt, North Norfolk.

Initially he will follow exactly the same format as the old Ally Pally fairs, with the same layout as under Lindy Berkman. He is confident of 700-750 exhibitors at his first fair and as far as possible he will allocate them the same stands they had under the previous organiser, with whom, he says, he has not been in touch.

He also said he found Firoka most cooperative and “keen to get the fairs up and running”.

In due course, Mr Barrows intends to put his own stamp on the event. For example, he said: “I will introduce into Ally Pally an antiques valuation roadshow and bring in some restoration experts.”

But for the time being, he is strictly following the old formula, and would appear to have found immediate favour with the trade. He announced the fair was back early last week and by Friday the April event was half full.

By David Moss