THOUSANDS gathered to see Fairport Convention launch the 41st Cropredy Convention Festival.

The folk rockers, who are celebrating their 50th year, took to the stage yesterday with an acoustic set to open the event - which this year sold out in record time.

There were fears that the campsite at the festival wouldn't be suitable following a week of heavy rain, but the site passed a last-minute inspection.

Festival spokeswoman Stevie Horton, speaking yesterday, said: "The sun is thankfully out after a wet few days.

"People enjoyed catching the first act by Fairport Convention at what should be a fantastic weekend celebrating the band's 50th anniversary."

The festival will run until midnight.