How two camels stole the show at Hendon Purim party

The camels Max and Baxter are no strangers to the limelight, from rap videos to nativity scenes…. but it was their first Purim


A camel came to Hendon (Photo: Jonathan Kendall)

Hendon residents were joined by unlikely guests at a Purim party last weekend – two camels named Max and Baxter.

The two, usually Wiltshire-based, camels came all the way to Hendon to cheer up children for this year’s Purim celebration, the first after the October 7 massacre in Israel.

The humped pair were hired by a generous Hendon resident who “wanted to give the local children something to smile about after the horrible year the Jewish community has had.”

The events organiser, who did not wish to be named, said his wife had “really wanted to do something fun this year so she was the one behind the idea.”

With the permission of their neighbors on either side of the road they contacted camel experts and family-run business Joseph's Amazing Camels to organise camel rides for local children.

It was Baxter and Max’s first Purim and they were accompanied by camel expert Daisy Fossett who said the pair “loved the experience and were well-behaved on the day. It was a fabulous atmosphere,” she said.

Dasiy works on the camel farm started by her parents and Joseph and Rebecca.

Speaking to the JC she said: “We did an initial site assessment and made sure everything they need would be in place on the day.

“Their comfort and safety is important to us and they loved giving rides to all the children it was lovely to be a part of and the costumes were great.

“It was my first Purim but not the first time we have been hired for Jewish events and festivals.”

And Max and Baxter are no strangers to the limelight, when they are not appearing in east London rap videos, they are staring in Christmas nativity scenes.

Daisy explained: “They didn’t put a hoof wrong and loved the attention they got on the day. They ate loads of carrots and had a lovely time. We all did.”

According to one passerby: “There were loads of people walking past and driving around party-hopping, and I overheard conversations along the lines of: ‘The host really pulled out all the stops this year.’”

Joseph's Amazing Camels, which offers camel treks at £49 per person for an hour, was set up Joseph Fossett, who is a member of the oldest circus family in the United Kingdom.

He has been training animals for over 35 years.

His camel farm prides itself on putting the camels first and their Instagram account shows off Baxter being treated to some physiotherapy.

Daisy said while camels get a bad reputation for kicking, biting and spitting, Max and Baxter’s behavior in Hendon was “perfect. They didn’t put a foot wrong.”

“They are sensitive and very intelligent animals,” she said.

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