THOUSANDS flocked to Chepstow Racecourse for a free day of entertainment after rain cancelled the horse racing.

Organisers were forced to cancel the racing after 25mm of rain overnight left the course waterlogged.

But as a gesture of goodwill, the racecourse threw open its doors, with free admission to see the Big Top entertainments and other activities.

From circus acts to fairground rides and performances from the Chepstow and Caldicot Widders border morris group, there were a range of activities on offer for families.

But for most, the big attraction was seeing children’s television star Mister Maker.

Nick and Charlotte Kibble, from Gloucester, came along to the event with their children Sylvie, six, and Henry, one-year-old.

Mr Kibble said: “We thought it would be a nice place to come for the Easter weekend because it is close by and there is a friendly atmosphere.

“It would have been nice if the racing was on but there is nothing you can do about the weather, and there is still a lot going on.”

Chris and Jodie Childs were also looking forward to seeing Mister Maker with their eight-month-old son, Kian.

“This is the first time we have been to the event,” said Mr Childs.

“It’s a good set up and we are looking forward to seeing Mister Maker.”

Phil Bell, executive director at Chepstow Racecourse, said it was about making the best of a difficult situation.

He said: “It was frustrating to lose the racing.

“We made the best of a difficult day by letting several thousand have a free day out to see someone as well known as Mister Maker.

“Hopefully some of those who came along will return for our other family race days.”

Meanwhile, also over the Easter weekend, a chocolate egg hunt was held at a community field acquired by the trustees of the Hood Memorial Hall, Devauden.

The five acre field is next to the existing hall play area, backs onto Chepstow Park Woods and has breath taking views over the valley.

When a proposal to sell the field was announced by the owners, the hall committee put in an offer which was accepted.

Villagers were asked to vote for a suitable name for the field and after judging the entries Cae Ni (our field) was chosen by a panel of children and adults.

The field can now continue to be enjoyed by everyone and be used for social events.

The first was an Easter egg hunt. Children from the village chased all over the field searching for the chocolate rewards.

The next event is the annual Devauden Music Festival on May 18 and 19, with more than 24 bands taking part.