THOUSANDS of people headed to Cwmbran’s Big Event at the boating lake on Saturday afternoon, and enjoyed the glorious sunshine.

Organisers said the number of visitors to the packed event would probably exceed last year’s figure of 10,000 by at least 2,000.

Dancing, singing, rock climbing, games, a dog show, a raft race and a performance by Wales’ best Elvis impersonator, Darren ‘Graceland’ Jones, all featured at the free fun day.

Sian Court, who along with partner Paul Wheeler, from Croesyceiliog, was at the front to see ‘Elvis’ perform, said: “It is our first time here and we have just come for Elvis, but it is a lovely day, the weather is very good as well and it’s nice to have events like this.”

Kirsty Juckes-Hughes brought her two-year-old daughter, Lydia, and seven-year-old son, Jacob, along to the event, with partner Gareth Bowden.

“It is great here but it is a bit too busy this year, it’s a bit stressful!” she said, as the family enjoyed lunch in the sunshine.

“The children have been on the trampoline and they want to go on the bouncy castle. We came last year and the petting zoo is good. It is a nice event to bring the kids to.”

Sylvia Williams, committee member for the Gwent Badger Group, was one of the stall-holders at the event and said it was just as busy as last year.

“Last year we raised £160, which is a lot for us, and we are hoping to do the same this year, to help fight the impending badger cull,” she said.

Martial arts, Cwmbran’s Nepalese dancers, the Vortex Dance Cru and the Dolly Rockers cheerleaders all gave performances throughout the day, while traders sold icecream, cheese, mini doughnuts and wood-smoked meat.

Susan Fiander-Woodhouse.

from the Blaenavon Cheddar Company, said she and her husband, Jerry, were pleased to be part of the event this year.

“My son and daughter represented us last year because we were at the opening of Llanyrafon Manor, but this year it is a really good attendance,”

she said.

Ceri Howells and Sara Watkins, from the Lollipops and Ladybirds company, which makes keepsakes from babies’ hand- and footprints, said last year was fabulous for them and soon they hope to open a shop in Cwmbran. “We are event veterans as we spent two years as a mobile company and this is normally a good day, it looks just as busy as last year,” said Ms Howells. Celtic Ladies football and netball teams were the winners of one of the raft races held on the boating lake, in which a number of Torfaen councillors also took part.

One of the organisers, Liz Crowley, who was watching the races, told the Argus: “It is wonderful so far and busier than last year.

The event lasts fromnoon until 6pm so we don’t know exact numbers yet, but I would say around 12,000 people are here.

We had 10,000 last year.”