Thetford’s long awaited carnival returns

Scenes from the towns 
carnival back in 1985

Scenes from the towns carnival back in 1985

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Thetford’s carnival could be set to make a comeback after a three-decade hiatus.

The town council is looking to expand the highly successful Thetford’s Great Festival next year with events running from July to October,

Scenes from the towns 
carnival back in 1985

Scenes from the towns carnival back in 1985

Town clerk Tina Cunnell said: “We will have a meeting to propose a year of events, which includes a carnival, hopefully it will all be passed and then everyone had better get their floats ready.”

The carnival is thought to have stopped running in the mid-80s, but plans being considered next month would see a float parade once again flow through the town, ending at Melford Common for a music festival or fair.

After the success of this year’s Festival River Day, the council wants the carnival to be one of the stand out events next year.

Mrs Cunnell said: “It is aspirational and not cast iron but hopefully we get the rubber stamp at the meeting, fingers crossed.”

Scenes from the towns 
carnival back in 1985

Scenes from the towns carnival back in 1985

People and charities have already contacted the clerk about when they can put floats into the event.

Mrs Cunnell believes the return of the carnival would give the town a real buzz and positive atmosphere.

She said: “It is just a chance for our community to create a real feel good factor and identity for our town, if agreed it could be something we can be very proud of.”

Linda Bunn, a Thetford resident who remembers the carnival the last time it was in town, was excited about it returning to the streets of Thetford.

Scenes from the towns 
carnival back in 1985

Scenes from the towns carnival back in 1985

She said: “People were lining the streets back then and from where we were standing on Magdalen Street we saw all the floats go past.

“I think it would be nice to see the carnival back again, I can take the grandchildren to it and hopefully it can bring the town together like it used to.”

An event that has already been agreed for the town is a Winter Wonderland at King’s House Gardens on November 26 and 27.

Visitors will be able to enjoy Santa’s grotto, reindeer karaoke, a bouncy castle and even an ice rink on the ground’s tennis courts, as well as stalls, mulled wine and bell ringers.

Scenes from the towns 
carnival back in 1985

Scenes from the towns carnival back in 1985

Mrs Cunnell cannot wait for the winter festivities to start in late November after getting this far with the plans.

She said: “It has been a big and lengthy undertaking due to cost and staffing but I am pleased it has got to this stage.

“King’s House Gardens is going to be a fantastic setting for the wonderland, and it is another positive thing we are trying to get going for Thetford town to put us back on the map.”