IT was a weekend when Saddleworth forgot – temporarily at least – about the fires still raging across the moors.

Thousands turned out in glorious weather to make Saddleworth Show, and the event preceding it, Wellifest, a huge success.

Organisers the Rotary Club of Saddleworth and Oldham Metro Rotary Club are still counting the cash raised from the events which took place on Saturday and Sunday at Well-i-Hole Farm in Greenfield.

Tony Burke, spokesman for the Saddleworth rotarians, said the success of the event was a vindication of the decision – backed by police and emergency services – to go ahead with the show.

“If we had been told it might be unsafe to go ahead with the show, we would not have proceeded,” said Mr Burke, alluding some comments on social media which argued that the show should be cancelled.

“I think there was a sense that, despite the problems on Saddleworth Moor, people would come and have fun at a country show, listen to great music and enjoy street food.

“There was a sense of ‘let’s just get on with it’.”

Mr Burke hailed the contribution of Oldham Mountain Rescue team which traditionally supports the show. Although the team attended, they had frequently depart to help with effort firefighting effort on Saddleworth Moor.

He said the Wellifest event – the first time it has taken place alongside the show – was a major success.

“The great thing about it was that it resembled the main show in that it was a family orientated event,” he said. “There weren’t just tribute acts, but there were also some local bands who did very well indeed.”

Highlights of the show included the performance of the famous Juba do Leao drumming band with their upbeat mix of Brazilian-inspired music and dance.

Also featured were an array of talented singers, dancers and musicians from Oldham’s own Mahdlo Youth Zone who joined Saddleworth Dancers and Blades Academy Rap and street dancers on stage.

Their performances were complemented by Baby Ballet and Suzi’s School of Performing Arts.