Thrilling crowds for decades

Jack Curtis from Busy Bees nursery making props and decorations for their float
Jack Curtis from Busy Bees nursery making props and decorations for their float

A town’s carnival procession is shaping up to be its biggest in years, with 14 floats already signed up to dazzle crowds this weekend.

After a year of planning, the organisers of Kettering’s annual carnival have finally got everything in place for this year’s event, which takes place on Saturday, August 18.

A total of 14 floats have signed up for this year’s procession, the carnival’s highest number for five years.

With inquiries ongoing, that number could reach closer to 20 by the weekend.

Festival chairman Alan Cockshoot said: “We’ve got 14 floats at the minute, but we could have more, so it will be quite big this year.

“We haven’t had as many as this for a number of years and we’re pleased with that.

“We’ve been trying hard to get the message out there about the carnival for several years, and maybe it’s coming back into fashion, so it is all good stuff.”

Among those in this year’s procession will be Starlight Dance, MaSh Dance Studios, Busy Bees Nursery, Big Bopper Disco Entertainment and the Harlequin pub.

The procession will start in Stamford Road at 1pm, before weaving through the town centre via Bowling Green Road, down High Street then along Rockingham Road.

It will come to a stop at Rockingham Road Pleasure Park in Park Road at 3pm for the fete.

Youngsters from Busy Bees Nursery at Kettering Venture Park have been preparing costumes and props for their float for the past two months.

Float co-ordinater Lucy Edwards said: “This will be our fifth year of taking part in the carnival and all the children are really excited.

“We’ve got about 20 of them taking part, and they’ve worked so hard to get everything ready.

“It’s always great to see the community come together.”

Nene Valley Dance Academy and MaSh Dance will perform at the fete, which opens at 11am.

There will be plenty of entertainment at the fete, including the Northampton Pipe Band, wrestling shows and vintage vehicles as well as family amusements.

The day will raise money for good causes, with all proceeeds going towards the Kettering Amalgamated Clubs Committee for the Blind.

Judges chose Carlie Cope, 18, as Kettering carnival queen at the town’s Conservative Club back in May.

Lauren Mehmet, 14, will be senior princess, Courtney Barnes, 10, junior queen and Charlotte Larmour, eight, is junior princess for the carnival on Saturday.