19th Oct, 2018

Thousands turn out for sun-soaked Shirley Carnival

Felix Nobes 9th Jul, 2018

SHIRLEY carnival saw thousands of people turn out for a sun-soaked afternoon of events and attractions with a beach party theme.

The calendar highlight saw residents take to Shirley Park on Saturday (July 7) to join in festivities.

These included hook a duck, temporary tattoos, football shoot-outs, paintball, tombolas, a tin can alley and splat the rat.

The beach party theme was completed with a Tropical Steel Band, a limbo dancing competition and a surfboard competition.

Our photographer Jon Mullis was on hand to capture some of those trying their hand at activities, sampling exotic cuisines or simply frolicking in the summer sun.

Following the official opening by local celebrity Malcolm Stent, the Trinidad and Tobago Merryweather Steel Band got things off to a cracking start with a rousing musical performance in the main arena.

Entertainment continued with performances from the Animated Dance Company and the Shirley Gospel Choir.

In keeping with the theme, every child entering the park was give some Shirley Lions lettered rock and encouraged to have a go on the surf simulator.

Two competitions were held, one for the longest time anyone could balance on the surf simulator and second a limbo dancing competition.

And the very young were not forgotten as Punch and Judy encouraged them to join in with their antics while they could also leap around on the bouncy castles and for the more adventurous the go-carts were also very popular.

Carnival chairman Sophie Lees said “This year we introduced some new elements to the carnival and they certainly went down well with the crowds. We acknowledge that we could not compete with the England game but for those who stayed on into the late afternoon we hope they enjoyed a fun packed day.

“We had a reasonable turnout of people despite the football which means the amount raised for charity will be down this year. “Thanks must go to our main sponsors – The Window Centre, ASDA and Midhire Van Rental as without their support the event would not have been possible”.

The Lions are still counting the money, but Sophie indicated that the Carnival should raise around £3,000 which will be donated to a range of local charities.

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