PERSHORE turned purple for the launch of its month-long Plum Festival on Saturday.

Purple balloons festooned the town centre and visitors were welcomed by the purple prose of the town crier, Robert Speight.

The event last Saturday was centred on Plum Alley – otherwise known as Chapman Court – which was lined with stalls selling plums and plum related products from jam to sausages. Plum Alley will operate every Saturday and on the climax of the festival, Plum Fayre Day on August Bank Holiday Monday.

Prunella the Plum mingled with the crowds, and accompanying town mayor, Chris Parsons, to officially launch the festival were the Plum Princess, Freya Baah, and her attendants, Grace Whitaker and Olivia Addis.

The mayor said: “I can assure you this year will give you a wonderful event during the coming month. The festival started as a one-day event, but now it has matured to a month-long event throughout August and what better way to celebrate the ancient Pershore plum.”

Festival chairman Angela Tidmarsh said: “It is really great to see so many people here today.

“I hope they will continue to come along throughout the month and for our really big event on Plum Fayre day.”

Tomorrow, the interest switches to Worcester Racecourse for the Pershore Plum Festival family fun race day featuring the resurrection of the Land O’Plums Chase, the ‘Gold Cup’ event last run on Pershore racecourse 71 years ago.