A FUNFAIR described as a touring work of art is visiting Swindon this weekend.

Carters Steam Fair's visit to Swindon will be one of the fair's first outings after its winter hibernation.

The fair, run by a family firm based near Reading,will be at the Steam museum tomorrow and Sunday, and next weekend.

The fair is believed to be the only one in the country that still has steam-powered rides and as such is in huge demand for appearances in films and television programmes.

It has featured in films such as The Krays and End Of The Affair.

John Haze, who works for the fair, said: "The fair only works at weekends and only between late March and September.

"During those winter months we have a team of 27 people restoring and taking care of the rides to make sure they are in perfect working order.

"We don't tend to travel too far from our base at White Waltham, near Reading, because our vehicles are also of a vintage nature.

"It's quite a spectacle to see, the machines have all been carefully restored.

"It's like a touring work of art."

The fair has brought with it the Jubilee Steam Gallopers the oldest steam-driven carousel in existence dating back to 1895.

It has has Paramount Chairoplanes and rock 'n' roll dodgems from the 1950s painted with artwork featuring Elvis Presley.

The fair was started by John Carter, a former stock car driver, who collected a range of old and derelict fairground items and restored them until he had enough for his own funfair.

He died in December 2000 but his legacy has been passed down to his wife Anna and three sons.

Over the years Carters Steam Fair has grown and is now renowned as one of the finest collection of vintage fairground rides in the world.

It has been visited by many celebrities, including Roger Daltry and Mick Jagger, as well as Princes Diana and the princes William and Harry.

The fair, which is open from noon to 8pm, is one of the attractions at Steam leading up to Easter.

There will also be a children's Easter craft workshop and an egg hunt around the museum tomorrow and Sunday.