IN 1867 or 1868 someone suggested holding one of those newfangled 'garden fetes' in the grounds of the Hospital of St Cross.

Winchester was a sleepy market town still getting used to the arrival of the railway.

One hundred and fifty years later the event in the oldest charitable institution in the country is still going strong, attracting more than 2,000 people.

Saturday's event in glorious weather raise around £10,000 funds for three charities, the Parish of St Faith, the Winchester Hospice and Community First, Winchester,

Not much has changed in the last 150 years with our Victorian ancestors probably recognising lots of the activities such as the Morris dancing, Punch and Judy, the roundabout and the gentle music courtesy of the Chandler's Ford Boys 'Brigade Brass Band.

They would certainly have recognised the 'brothers' the residents of the almshouses who traditionally wear black gowns.

Among those attending was city MP Steve Brine and his family.

John Pringle, fete treasurer, said: "This was a wonderful result from a very successful 150th anniversary fete. As one of the oldest fetes in the country we have always provided a range of family entertainment, the sale of good quality second-hand goods and home made cakes and other refreshments.

"The added bonus is that it takes place in the stunning setting of the Hospital of St Cross, one of Winchester's iconic landmarks."

Mr Pringle thanked Carter Jonas and Shentons for their support and Steve Brine who drew the raffle. One of the prizes was a bottle of champagne signed by the Prime Minister.

The fete was opened by the Rev Reg Sweet, Master of St Cross. and Rev Philip Krinks, Vicar of St Faiths.