It was always going to be good - a day exclusively about celebrating all that makes Ripon great, and an ideal opportunity for residents to discover something new about our city.
But the seventh annual Ripon Sights, Sounds and Stories event was even bigger this year, with a new dimension of stories added to an already packed programme of family activities.
Ripon library took a lead on this new element, presenting a collection of unique stories from city residents, hosting storytime sessions, and giving in depth talks about the history of Ripon canal.
Ripon library volunteer Avril Stevenson-Davies was helping out on the day. She said: “Sights and Sounds is a brilliant idea. People who have lived in Ripon all their lives, or even someone who is a comparative newcomer like me, can get to know what’s going on and find out something new about Ripon.”
Richard Willis, who gave the talks about Ripon canal, said the whole event is an exciting way of promoting Ripon to both visitors and residents - he said there are often hidden gems that even those who have lived in Ripon all their lives have yet to discover.
All three of Ripon’s museums offered free entry to anyone with proof of a city postcode, and the museums were packed with visitors throughout the day.
Helping out at the workhouse museum, chair of trustees, Richard Taylor, said: “I am certainly delighted to see so many people here today, enjoying the museum’s new spaces.”
The Ripon City Morris Dancers and Betty Lupton’s Ladle Laikers entertained across the city, bringing important sights and sounds to the event. Crowds gathered to watch them at Ripon Cathedral, the workhouse museum, and in the Market Square.
The Ripon Cathedral Youth Choir and Anoka choir from Minnesota also deeply moved and captivated visitors with their incredible performances.
The Dean of Ripon Cathedral, the Very Rev John Dobson, said: “It’s a great event. It could be called counting our blessings, it shows that there are so many good things happening in our city, and we should celebrate that.”
At Ripon Town Hall, there were talks about the city’s historic silverware, and the Market Square was alive with performances, a ghost tour, and demonstrations from the North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service.
Another important element of the day was the dozens of stalls from Ripon charities and community groups, who all proudly presented the great work they do.
Ripon Rotary was among the stallholders at the Cathedral. Greeting visitors to the rotary stand, Wendy Richardson said: “The event is a brilliant way of promoting the city and raising awareness of what organisations do.”