Chard Carnival Committee
In 1967, representatives from the League of Friends and Chard Youth Centre met to discuss ways in which to raise money for the respective groups. Gerald Quick, Mervyn Ball, Tom Miller and Wendy Clulow decided that the best option would be to revive Chard Carnival, after a break of 13 years.
The carnival is now in its 46th year and has raised over £97,000 for local charities and organisations, including Chard Christmas Lights, Children’s Hospice South West, Chard Hospital and all the local schools.
In the early 1970’s, Chard, Ilminster, Wellington and Taunton formed the South Somerset Federation of Carnivals, with Yeovil joining at a later date. This provided a competition for the best entries from the 5 towns taking part. Yeovil Carnival has since ceased to exist, but the federation of 4 towns remains.
The committee is made up of 16 volunteers and we meet every month. Some are very actively involved, others help when and if they can. The committee has been led by Helena Stone for 4 years, but works very much as a team, and are all enthusiastic about staging Chard’s Carnival!
The main aim of the committee is to raise money to give to local charities and organisations. It costs about £6000 to put on the carnival, so the committee works hard to fundraise throughout the year to cover these costs, so that all monies raised on carnival night can be donated back into the local community.
We hold events such as a Children’s Carnival (on the 1st Saturday in October), and Motorcycle Run on the last Sunday in September, and a quiz on the first Sunday of October. We also hold events such as coffee mornings, Balls, bingo, flower demonstrations and fetes. Our website and Facebook page have up to date information on what we are doing!
We also hold a yearly competition to find the next Miss Chard / Carnival princess. Entrants must raise a minimum of £250 to be eligible. Prizes include: dress, accessories, jewellery, photo shoot, hair and make-up, flowers, tiara, sash!
2017’s Carnival dates will be added soon – keep an eye out!
To view images from previous years gallery please click here.
Maggie Stone (Secretary)
9 Bondfield Way