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Beloved circus will not return to Hythe for first time in 20 years

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Original article from Kent Live

A beloved circus will not be performing in Hythe for the first time in 20 years.

Santus Circus has been visiting Hythe Green annually for the past two decades, but has been barred from returning this year by local officials.

Circus director Ernest Santus had been in contact with Hythe Parish Council to renew his annual reservation for the site, but was told that other events had been booked in, meaning there were no available slots for his show.

Following the blow, Ernest, who has been director of Santus Circus, for more than 20 years, arranged to use private land at Dymchurch and even spent £1300 on advertising the event.

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However, they were later told by the landowner's agent that they were not allowed to visit.

Speaking on his memories of visiting Hythe each year, Mr Santus said: "The people came and watched us for so many years, they were very nice there.

"They loved the circus and we made a special effort to bring a different show every year."

Santus Circus will not be returning to Hythe this year

Like many other businesses, the coronavirus pandemic has had a paralysing effect on the circus, restricting performances taking place in front of crowds.

"With the pandemic, I am having to do everything by myself," Ernest added.

"The bookings, arranging travel, sorting advertisement, it has been a very difficult and challenging time."

This will be the first time in over two decades that Santus Circus will not be travelling to Hythe, and Ernest believes families with children will miss out on the occasion.

He said: "We have no animals involved in our performances.

"For the kids it's fantastic. Trapeze, high wire, motorbikes, the kids love it."

In a statement a spokesman for Hythe Town Council said: "We can only have a certain number of events on the Green each year and all other events had been booked, there were no available slots."

Original Article