RUNNING an event for more than 4,000 people is no easy feat, especially if you’re only 16 years old.
However, Eden Loweth could put Lord Alan Sugar’s Apprentice hopefuls to shame with his skills in making sure Holbeach Christmas Fair goes off without a hitch.
To top it off, after “falling” into the job by chance, he is now in demand to help make other events throughout South Holland as much of a success.
“I became involved while Don and Helen Scott were running it,” explained Eden, who lives in John Swain’s Way, Long Sutton, with his mum Paula Loweth and step-dad Alan Wilcox.
“My mum was a member of the committee and she used to do the craft and farmer’s market. They invited me along because they wanted to get a younger person’s view.
“After a couple of years I became vice-chairman.”
This year there were 34 stands, with six committee members co-ordinating the event.
“It’s my job to oversee the whole thing,” said Eden. “I speak to people at South Holland District Council and Lincolnshire Police.
“I have to make sure everything is in the right place and general management throughout the event.”
This year was Eden’s fourth year in charge.
“When there’s a couple of weeks to go, you have got to get everything right. It’s a lot of pressure,” he said.
“At the moment I am at college three days a week so I’m really busy trying to fit everything in. I don’t really notice it throughout the year.
“It’s a relief when it’s all over.”
Eden says the fair brings in traders and visitors from all over the country – leaving many surprised about its size.
He said: “It’s nice to go and ask how traders have done on the day. Several sold out completely this year. It’s nice to hear that it was worth them coming. It’s quite rewarding.”
One thing that also surprises visitors is Eden’s age - he is just a few weeks shy of turning 17.
“There’s only a few times when it’s been a problem,” he said. “Some people do not like speaking to someone of my age.
“When I go up to some people they blank me and want to speak to someone else. On the whole, lots are just a bit taken back.”
While Eden appears to have been plunged head-first into event management, he remains open-minded about his future.
His career dream actually lies with being an interior designer and he is currently studying for a Btec in art and design at Stamford College.
However, interest in his ability to manage large community events is building.
Eden revealed: “This year I have been approached by several different councils asking me to take charge of other events throughout the year.
“I’m considering it at the moment. I enjoy doing it. It’s nice to know someone appreciates what we are doing.”
Eden has, however, a few ideas already up his sleeve.
“It always seems Spalding have their event on the same day as Holbeach,” he said. “What I would like to see is a bit of discussion so they can have it one weekend and we do it another. I would like to see two completely separate events.”
With the Holbeach Christmas Fair over for this year, the committee can enjoy a peaceful and relaxing festive break.
But they can’t expect to get too comfy, as the work will start again in January.
Eden has already begun to reflect on this year.
“From this year the highlight was seeing Storm Troopers raising money for a girl with Cystic Fibrosis,” he said. “When they came around the corner at the front of the parade, people were filming on their video cameras.
“The hardest thing is getting people on board. They are reluctant to take on a position because they think it’s going to be hard work. If they could do just one job, it could save time for other people.”
Having so much responsibility with the fair has also given Eden, who was home schooled for the majority of his secondary education, a confidence boost.
Eden attended William Stukeley Primary School in Holbeach before moving up to George Farmer Technology and Language College.
However, he became “unhappy” at secondary school and the decision was made to bring tutors to him at home instead.
Eden sat his GCSE exams at a college in March, Cambridgeshire, in the summer and secured the results he needed for college.
“The fair has helped me get my confidence back,” he said. “When I left school I was very nervous and would not be able to speak to anyone. Now I have my confidence back up.”