Future of Stapleford carnival hangs in the balance
Stapleford’s chances of having a carnival this year hang in the balance, its organisers have said.
The carnival, which has been running for more than two decades, lost its popular parade in 2013 and now the whole event is at risk. Its organisers, Katherine and Robert Stewart, have said the event is in a ‘state of flux’ after the Hemlockstone Lions Club withdrew their support for the event.
“The Hemlockstone Lions have decided they will not be supporting it any more,” Mrs Stewart said. “That means its just Robert and myself organising it all. We have everything ready to go, but there are still some things that need to be sorted out.
“We should probably know by the middle of May whether it will go ahead. We are still taking bookings and hopefully it should go ahead but we can’t say for certain at the moment.
“It would be fantastic if a group or business could come forward and help us out with it all, but we will see. We really hope we don’t have to cancel the carnival because it is a wonderful event for the community in Stapleford.”**
The carnival is traditionally held in September at Ilkeston Road Recreation Ground. Up to 2012, floats, marching bands and people were allowed to walk along the road to the recreation ground as part of the popular parade.
Peter Barker, chairman of the Hemlockstone Lions Club, said the move to not support the parade was an ‘internal club decision’. “Nothing outside the club was considered for this. It was an internal club decision,” he said.
“It’s just one of those things unfortunately. I think the club took over organising the carnival when another group found that they couldn’t do it any more. We are now also at that point.”
Local councillor and chairman of Stapleford Community Group Richard MacRae said he would be happy to help the organisers if they needed it.
“I was told that the organisers had told Broxtowe Borough Council that it wouldn’t be going ahead,” Councillor MacRae said. “I contacted them and asked them if I could help out. I said whatever needs to be sorted out we could possible help them with because it’s a good event for the community.
“We haven’t been able to sit down and talk about it yet but hopefully they will let us help them, because we just want the carnival to go ahead. It hasn’t been the same since the parade stopped but this could be a chance to get it going again.”
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**Councillor Richard MacRae has spoken to Katherine today and is hoping that a meeting will take place in the next week or two.