VARIOUS mind and head-related charities have benefited from this year’s Bridport Hat Festival, with more than £2,000 being handed out.

Brain Tumour Research and Brain Injury Rehabilitation Trust received £800 each, with Bridport Mind Fest, No Limits Bridport and the Brit Valley Rotary Club’s chosen charity, Brain Wave, all receiving a cheque for £200.

The cheques were handed out to representatives at The Ropemakers pub last week.

Former chairman of Bridport Hat Festival, Brian Atkinson, thanked everyone who helped support this year’s event, before announcing he was standing down.

He said: “As we know, it is not just about money, but we do have expenses and we do like to give donations to charity after it is all over.

“This year’s festival was a resounding success, the weather was good and there was a good turnout.

“The committee has given me tremendous support and I am going to leave the running of the hat festival to the new committee because I am now standing down.

“This year’s committee have done a tremendous job and introduced a new event, which is a mad hatter’s tea party, which again was a tremendous success.

“I am confident that this new committee will continue with fresh ideas and produce an even better festival next year, which is our 10th anniversary.”

Bridport mayor, Cllr Barry Irvine, was also on hand to help with the cheque presentations.

He said: “On behalf of the town council, I would like to thank the committee, thank the volunteers and thank everybody involved in the hat festival.

“It is a unique festival, I don’t think any other town has a hat festival, and the fact you have done nine of them, I am sure you will think up something special for the 10th festival.

“This year’s went really well, the weather was fine, there were loads of people there of all ages – dogs as well – and great hats.

“I am sure next year will be wonderful, it is going to be in good hands with the new committee.”