Walking across the Common I noticed that work had begun setting up the fairground for the Easter week. Part of me had that childhood desire to peak over the fence and see what rides there were; recalling the memories of begging my long suffering parents to give my school friends and I £10 for the fair and running off to enjoy smashing in to one another dodgems, being scared on the ghost train and being spun nauseatingly round and round on Waltzer – good times! However I don’t know what it is but there’s something a lot less appealing about it now. I’ve been trying to put my finger on it as to what it is about them that’s changed to make me like them less, sure the prices of the rides have gone up…quite steeply but hasn’t everything? It’s not that I’m particularly worried about safety – The Health and Safety Executive carried out a safety review of fairground rides and amusement parks after the death of three children and two adults in the UK in the summer of 2000. Figures show that fatalities have remained consistently below this level ever since and rides nowadays are generally much better managed and controlled than 20 years ago. And I don’t think I’m being a general scrooge about the whole thing (feel free to correct me if I’m wrong!) but it’s the atmosphere – it used to be more of an innocent outing with games stalls, candy floss and family fun but now appears to attract only those hungry for top speed rides that spin round to the point of feeling pretty sick, propel you in to the air or fling you violently about all set to a background of deafeningly thumping music….eek, no thanks! What do you think? – agree or am I just being a kill joy?!