Newmarket Carnival fun curtailed by rain but parade goes down a storm
Newmarket Carnival fell foul of Saturday afternoon’s downpours but not before High Street crowds had been treated to a parade to remember.
After a week of sunny days, the rain started as a shower but then set in for the rest of the afternoon meaning stallholders and food vendors packed up and left by about 4pm after the crowds who had followed the parade of floats on to The Severals headed home.
“It was very disappointing,” said Tracey Williams, who organises the annual event with her sister Julie. “It was really busy to start with but then it was just a washout so we cancelled the last couple of bands and packed up by 5.30pm. There wasn’t any point trying to carry on because there was no-one left.
“This is the sixth event we’ve organised and the first one to be hit by the weather so I suppose we mustn’t complain too much but it does mean there will be less money this year to share between our charities.”
The event started with the traditional parade from Tattersalls through the High Street to The Severals.
Led by a fire engine, the parade featured a number of classic cars, one carrying the Mayor Cllr Rachel Hood, who officially opened the event.
The Newmarket Journal Carnival Princess and Prince, Ruby Frappell and Kevin Nel travelled in another car with attendants Jasmine Williams and Lottie Phipps following on.
This year there were eight colourful floats on the theme of best-selling children’s author Julia Donaldson’s much-loved stories.
Houldsworth Valley Primary Academy with their version of The Snail and The Whale were declared the winners with the T3 Theatre group runners-up for their depiction of The Scarecrows’ Wedding. In third place was All Saints’ School’s The Highway Rat.
Also in the parade were a group of Star Wars enthusiasts dressed in highly professional costumes as Princess Leia, Chewbacca and a detachment of Storm Troopers .
Before the rain came, there was time for the crowd to enjoy a competition for the strongest man and strongest woman, run by the Studlands Park-based Asgard Fitness gym, and a display of their Korean martial art by the town’s Kuk Sool Won group.
Profits will be shares between East Anglia’s Childrens’ Hospices and the Befriending Network which provides volunteers to visit elderly, lonely and vulnerable people in their own homes.