Last Carnival Report

A fairy-tale end to Carnival 2016 - what a great day!

The afternoon started in an ominous way with very heavy showers but just after the floats had assembled the skies cleared and the sun shone for the procession.

As in previous years, local schools, young people’s clubs and other organisations had combined ingenuity with huge enthusiasm and effort in interpreting the Carnival theme. This year was all about magic and fantasy, with Disney, Super Heroes and Fairy Tales capturing the imagination of the participants in many noisy and colourful ways. As a result, the town centre was transformed by turn into Batman’s Gotham City, magical forests and the distant galaxies of Star Wars. In total there were 50 entries for the procession.

Earlier, procession entries vied with each other to grab the attention of the judges who, as ever, had the toughest of tasks in identifying winners across the various classes. Many achieved gold silver and bronze awards, yet several stood out for the sheer invention and impact of their displays.

The coveted Henry Liu Trophy for 2016 was won by St Andrew’s School, who all became superheroes for the day as The Incredibles, while the trophy for innovation and creativity presented by Wise & Co went to Rowledge School and their imaginative interpretation of the children’s story, Into the Forest. The Best in Show award this year went to the Jubilee Church, who had put a huge amount of work into their spectacular take on George Lucas’ Star Wars, complete with space-age battleships and aircraft.

Visitors and local residents of all ages were equally enthralled by the bustle and activity in Gostrey Meadow which this year included a large craft marquee for the first time, reflecting Farnham’s reputation as a craft town. Young and old alike were captivated by the many bands, stalls and children’s entertainments seizing their attention throughout the afternoon and evening.         

For Carnival Chairman Colin Jordan, the result was yet again a triumph for the extraordinary efforts of Farnham Lions, The Hedgehogs and all the other organisations and individuals who had made it all possible. “Next year’s theme, A Day at the Seaside, takes us in a completely different direction,” he says, “but I’ve no doubt that it will fire the enthusiasm of everyone taking part just as much as this year!”  

Boxing Club 101 Dalmations The Merry Wives of Windsor
Grrr... Mutant Ninja Turtles.... Thai Lotusland
Super woman.... DMF 7667 Farnham in Bloom
Superheroes Abbeyfield Judges at work
Star Wars Getting in the groove DMF 7823
DMF 7827 Ace of Hearts Double Decker

All Pictures Courtesy of the Aldershot, Farnham & Fleet Camera Club


The sun shines on Carnival 2015

Carnival Procession 1 Carnival Procession 2 Carnival Procession 3
Carnival Procession 4      Carnival Procession 5 Carnival Procession 6
Carnival Procession 7 Carnival Procession 8 Carnival Procession 9
Carnival Procession 10 Carnival Procession 11 Carnival Procession 12
Carnival Procession 13 Carnival Procession 14 Carnival Procession 15
Carnival Procession 16 Carnival Procession 17 Carnival Procession 18
Carnival Procession 19 Carnival Procession 20 Carnival Procession 21
Carnival Procession 22 Carnival Procession 23 Carnival Procession 24
Carnival Procession 25 Carnival Procession 26 Carnival Procession 27
Carnival Procession 28 Carnival Procession 29 Carnival Procession 30

All Pictures Courtesy of David Fisher and Chelle Harrison from the Aldershot, Farnham & Fleet Camera Club

It was all smiles at Carnival 2015, as the procession wound its way around Farnham town centre, to the loud acclaim of thousands of onlookers.  As in previous years, local schools, young people’s clubs and other organisations had combined ingenuity with huge enthusiasm and effort in interpreting the Carnival theme in many different ways. Waterloo was reflected in Wellington’s victorious army, Sweden’s greatest pop exports and the daily train commute to London, as participants tried to outdo each other in a riot of noise and colour, seeking to grab the attention of the judges and then the throngs of excited spectators lining the streets.  Many achieved ‘highly commended’ awards from the judges, yet several stood out for the sheer invention and impact of their displays. The coveted Henry Liu Trophy for 2015 was won by St Polycarp’s School, while the new trophy for innovation and creativity presented by Wise & Co went to St Peter’s School Wrecclesham. The Best in Show award this year went to Abbeyfield Wey Valley Society, with their unique take on South West Trains and the many stations en route to the Waterloo terminus. Visitors and local residents of all ages were equally enthralled by the bustle and activity in Gostrey Meadow, with eyes and ears captivated by the many bands, stalls and children’s entertainments seizing their attention throughout the afternoon and evening.          For Carnival Chairman Phil Alexander, the result was a triumph for the extraordinary efforts of Farnham Lions, The Hedgehogs and all the other organisations and individuals who had made it all possible. “With Disney, Superheroes and Fairy Tales as the theme for 2016, we will all have to go some to top this year’s efforts!” he believes.  Our new carnival chairman for 2016, Colin Jordan has assured us that he and his team are set to give it their very best effort to do so.   

2014 Procession Report

Organisers of the 2014 Carnival Fayre in Gostrey Meadow held their breath as they made final preparations; the forecast had promised heavy rain showers starting early afternoon. And it did not disappoint!

However participants and visitors alike were undeterred by the weather. The Carnival Fayre in Gostrey Meadow had more attractions than ever. Hundreds flocked there during the afternoon and evening to listen to the fantastic concert provided by local musicians, savour the feast of food and drink on offer and to visit a wide collection of stalls offering a range of interesting products and services and take the chance to win some great prizes on the tombolas. Younger children were able to enjoy an afternoon of fun in their own special area including Mr Magic and Max Fulham and his many puppet friends. Those who persevered were rewarded by improving weather throughout the afternoon

Carnival 2014_017 Carnival 2014_022 Carnival 2014_024

And the weather certainly helped this year's Carnival procession live up to its theme - Let's Go Safari. An almost tropical storm with torrential rain, thunder and lightning greeted procession entrants as they arrived in the Upper Hart Car Park to prepare. Whilst a few entrants were put off, the majority, many of whom had spent many weeks preparing their entry, were determined to put on a good show.

The theme had encouraged a diverse approach to interpretation. With lots of wild animals including lions, monkeys, zebras and even a crocodile on show, there was music, dancing, singing and a lot of fun being had by all.  A lot of effort had gone into entries and there seemed to be more young children than ever taking part.  It was a tough job for the judges to award the prizes and after much deliberation the Best in Show was awarded to St Andrew's School for their excellent and colourful interpretation of the carnival theme. The coveted Henry Liu trophy was won for the second year in succession by St Peter's School for their spectacular entry with more than 100 pupils and parents involved. The judges who presented the awards commented on the diverse nature of entries this year and praised all entrants for combating the weather.

In keeping with tradition, the Carnival procession was led by Sir Ray and Lady Tindle in their 1904 Speedwell, accompanied by the Carnival Prince, Ben Thomson and Princess, Francesco Lawton from St Peter's School in Farnham. The effort put in by everybody to make the Carnival Procession so colourful and the Carnival Fayre so vibrant was fantastic. The high quality and the creativity of the entries was much appreciated by the crowds lining the streets, who were also able to enjoy the performances of street entertainers.

Special thanks go to everyone involved in the organising and running of the day, in particular to the sponsors and supporters, all the volunteers and to those often forgotten who clear up after the event - the ATC Officers and cadets and Veolia, who ensure the streets of Farnham are left clean and tidy. Without all this help there would not be a Carnival Day.