CIRENCESTER'S much-loved annual mop fair returns tonight with various fairground rides and stalls.

The fair is one of the oldest fairs in the county and will be held in the Market Place throughout the day as well as next Monday.

There will be fairground rides and games, as well as food stalls visitors from far and wide, for what is one of the town’s most anticipated events.

Dating back to the 12th century, the Mop Fair takes its name from its original purpose, which was a hiring event, where servants carried the tools of their trade to show that they were available for work.

The fair was brought to the town by Nichols Amusements of the Showmen’s Guild of Great Britain and will offer a mix of fairground rides and stalls.

Marshal Nichols’ family have been bringing the Mop to Cirencester for generations and has worked closely with Cirencester Town Council to deliver the event.