THE prospect of bringing the Redditch Carnival back to the streets took a step closer to reality at a meeting held to test the waters on public enthusiasm for forming an organising committee.
The meeting was hosted by Councillor Mike Rouse, Portfolio Holder for Leisure & Cultural Services, in a volunteer capacity at Redditch Town Hall on last Tuesday, September 18.
“There was a lot of talk on Facebook about bringing the Carnival back so I thought I’d see if people were prepared to step up and make it happen,” said Coun Rouse.
“Seven people showed up, all very keen to set up a committee and take a lead on this hugely exciting project. For my part I am keen to make sure the project gets as much support as possible.”
Also key to making the meeting happen was Laney Walsh, who led on the prestigious ‘Celebrate Women of Redditch’ event earlier in the year.
The meeting was also attended by a representative from Tommy Wilson’s Amusements who are critical to a future Redditch Carnival due to the long history of the event and naming rights.
An interim committee has now been formed that will be holding its first meeting to run elections to each post for the year ahead.
The meeting will be on Monday, October 1 at 7pm in Committee Room 3 at Redditch Town Hall and all are invited to along to potentially join the committee or share ideas.
Members of the Astwood Bank Carnival committee have also pledged to support the Redditch Carnival by sharing their experiences and advice.
One of the volunteers who has stepped up as an interim co-chair is Amanda Haden, who said: “Some of my fondest childhood memories are of the carnival – and not just the parade.
“The lead up to the old Redditch Carnival and the planning of floats was all people would talk about for months beforehand. It gave everyone common ground and brought everyone together.
“Our community these days is far more diverse, it would be so great to bring it all together to share our cultures, hobbies, and interests and to highlight all the clubs, groups and businesses we have in our town.”
Another key volunteer is Sue Yeng who was credited with the success of the town’s Bandstand Events that ran over the summer.
She said: “The return of our traditional carnival is getting nearer! I could only dream of this before.”