A vegan festival in the United Kingdom drew massive crowds over the weekend, exceeding attendance expectation more than 60 percent. The Lyndhurst Community Centre in New Forest, England, held its first vegan fair, featuring 40 exhibitors selling everything from vegan food to cruelty-free clothing and home goods. Organizers planned for approximately 750 people and were shocked when more than 1,200 arrived. “Around 50 people were queuing up when we first opened the doors, and it was almost constant from then,” organizer Lizzi Shaw of Dorset Vegan said. “I spoke to people who had travelled more than an hour and a half to come along. It had an absolutely huge response … It just goes to show that the interest is really there for more [vegan options].” Lines into the event were so long that a “one in, one out” policy had to be enacted, while free chocolates were given to those waiting in order to quell any frustration. However, attendees were apparently happy just to have the access to vegan goods. “There was a clear consensus to carry on exactly as we have been [for future events],” Shaw said, referring to the response she received after taking to Facebook to make amends for the enormous lines. “Prepaid tickets are already available, but people still want there to be tickets on the door, and it seems that they don’t mind queueing for them.” The fair follows news of a Berlin vegan diner opening so large that police had to be called to disperse crowds.
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