Corby will be buzzing with excitement this weekend as the annual Corby Carnival and Corby Highland Gathering bring their own unique entertainment to the town.
On Saturday, July 13, and Sunday, July 14, there will be a feast for the ears and eyes with spectacular fun for all the family.
Performing at both the carnival and the highland gathering will be The Knox Grammar School Pipes and Drums Band from Australia.
The Sydney schoolboys, who are touring the UK, kindly offered to lead of the carnival from its start in Oldland Road at 1pm on Saturday.
Terri Meechan, vice-chairman of Corby Carnival Committee, said: “This year we have 30 entries, with 17 lorries decorated as carnival floats.
“I’m looking forward to it and we’re all set to go.
“We’ve got all the carnival courts from around the area and our twin town of Velbert, Germany.
“People have put alot of hard work into the floats and I would like everyone to come out on to the streets and give the parade a wave.
“At the carnival field in West Glebe Park there’s so much going on.
“Highlights include an Ariana Grande tribute act at 4pm in the Corby Radio Arena, a fun dog show with loads of prizes and two test-of-strength competitions for teams - a tug-of-war and a truck pull.
“The fire service are organising the truck pull and tug-of-war which is open to teams of five to eight people.”
Entry to the field is free and stalls will be open from midday to 5pm.
The carnival, on the theme of films and musicals, will form up at 11.30am with the parade setting off at 1pm for West Glebe Park.
Making it a bumper weekend for Corby down the road at the Charter Field in the Old Village will be the Corby Highland Gathering, open at 9.30am both days.
Two chieftains have been chosen as the ceremonial heads of the weekend.
Steel worker Andy Thompson, of event sponsor SIMA (part of Unite the Union), will join Glasgow comedian Gary Faulds sharing the chieftain role.
Gary, who has family connections to Corby, said: “I know of Corby’s Scottish heritage. My grandad spent a few years there as he was a scaffolder and always spoke of ‘Little Scotland’.
“I spent eight years in the British Army and did my training at Bassingbourn Barracks near Cambridge. My mum always said if the Army got too tough to escape to Corby as I would find a Glaswegian to help me home.
“To be asked to be the chieftain was such an honour – it’s the first time I have ever done anything like this.
“The last time I got dressed up I was guarding the Queen, so to be representing my country is an honour.
“I am looking forward to seeing all the activities on the Saturday and Sunday.”
As well as the return of the All England Highland Dancing Championships, with dancers competing on both Saturday and Sunday, there will be Solo Piping, Quartets and Pipe Band competitions on Sunday.
The weekend comes to a climax with the powerful display of the Massed Pipe Bands on Sunday afternoon.
Now in its 51st year there will be wrestling, provided by Extreme American Wrestling (EAW), a ‘Mini Highland Games’, displays plus craft stalls, NANNA Animal Rescue and a variety of catering outlets.
For those with energy to burn and adding to the traditional Scottish fun, a live ceilidh band will be providing the soundtrack for dancers on the Saturday evening.
Alternatively, Live Party In The Park - sponsored by SIMA - will feature Scotland’s Drums N’ Roses, The GrooveGetters and Rock ‘N’ Roll Rebels (with Vincent J Rigney and Andy Taylor) on the Charter Field on Saturday evening. Both are ticketed events.
Party in the Park tickets are £8 in advance, £10 on the gate, whilst the ceilidh is £5 per person.
Entry to Corby Highland Gathering is £5 for the whole weekend, with under 16s accompanied by an adult, free.