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Carnival Day 2014

The Carnival at the Castle 2014 took place on Sunday 22 June. The beautiful setting of Hertford Castle saw around 5000 people gather to celebrate a community day in the sunshine. There were tunes, stalls, Pimms and picnics, and dozens of fabulous princes and princesses exploring the Castle and parading in the arena! Thousands were raised for charity, and everyone enjoyed themselves.

view of grounds and stage carnival day 2014

Photo; Carnival day 2014, courtesy of Bernard Groom

THANK YOU to everyone who took part; those who helped, supported or sponsored, the stall-holders and the performers, and of course to everybody who came along on the day!  We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!

What took place

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Note;

Slideshows will auto-play until you hover on them. Refresh to restart!

Photos shown on this page are just some of the best. Many thanks to everyone who sent us theirs.

You may also like to see;
The Mercury's slideshow of the day - 17 images, 22 June 2014
One visitor's personal video on YouTube

 

The Opening

The Carnival was formally opened at 1.30pm in the arena in the Castle grounds by the Mayor of Hertford, Cllr Chantal Geall.

Cllr Geall gave an opening speech before declaring the Carnival 'Open!'.

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Stalls at the Castle

From 12pm to 5pm there were stalls and refreshments in the busy Castle grounds.

There was a good demand for pitches. Whilst the ground was perhaps not as full of stalls as we would have liked, we had a nice selection. 

Preference for stall applicants was given to Hertford-based applicants, and favourable rates were given to local businesses and/or charities.  Some favourites from previous years returned, whilst others were new faces!

Photos of the stalls are here;

  • You're never too young to visit the Theatre (photo Kayleigh Short)! You're never too young to visit the Theatre (photo Kayleigh Short)!
  • Hertford Rugby Club (HRFC) ready to play (photo Bernard Groom) Hertford Rugby Club (HRFC) ready to play (photo Bernard Groom)
  • Craft fun at the Selections stall (photo Steve Beeston) Craft fun at the Selections stall (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Lucky Dip at the Library stall (photo Steve Beeston) Lucky Dip at the Library stall (photo Steve Beeston)
  • This stall seemed popular ... (photo Steve Beeston) This stall seemed popular ... (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Face-painting (photo Steve Beeston) Face-painting (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Time for tea ... The Inner Wheel tea tent (photo Steve Beeston) Time for tea ... The Inner Wheel tea tent (photo Steve Beeston)
  • There were several craft stalls (photo Steve Beeston) There were several craft stalls (photo Steve Beeston)
  • The Army cadets (photo Steve Beeston) The Army cadets (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Messing about on boats: the Scout stall (photo Steve Beeston) Messing about on boats: the Scout stall (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Stalls in the beautiful setting of the Castle (photo Steve Beeston) Stalls in the beautiful setting of the Castle (photo Steve Beeston)
  • There were prizes to be won (photo Steve Beeston) There were prizes to be won (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Cocktail stall (photo Steve Beeston) Cocktail stall (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Happy helpers ... Hertford Rotary Bods (photo Steve Beeston) Happy helpers ... Hertford Rotary Bods (photo Steve Beeston)
  • People react to the idea there might not be a procession next year (photo Bernard Groom) People react to the idea there might not be a procession next year (photo Bernard Groom)
  • Not like honey? - you must bee joking (photo Steve Beeston) Not like honey? - you must bee joking (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Helping in yellow (photo Bernard Groom) Helping in yellow (photo Bernard Groom)
  • Sea and army cadet leaders (photo Steve Beeston) Sea and army cadet leaders (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Icecream at the Scoops stall (photo Steve Beeston) Icecream at the Scoops stall (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Police get younger all the time ... (photo Steve Beeston) Police get younger all the time ... (photo Steve Beeston)
  • There was some delicious food on offer (photo Steve Beeston) There was some delicious food on offer (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Jams and jewellery at the Country Market stall (photo Steve Beeston) Jams and jewellery at the Country Market stall (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Discovering treasures (photo Steve Beeston) Discovering treasures (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Rummaging at the book stall (photo Steve Beeston) Rummaging at the book stall (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Clair's Cakes - yummy (photo Steve Beeston)! Clair's Cakes - yummy (photo Steve Beeston)!
  • Games with the Sea cadets (photo Steve Beeston) Games with the Sea cadets (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Snap happy at the Camera club (photo Steve Beeston) Snap happy at the Camera club (photo Steve Beeston)
  • The friendly faces of Herts Libraries (photo Bernard Groom) The friendly faces of Herts Libraries (photo Bernard Groom)
  • Some of the 1st Hertford Scout group (photo Bernard Groom) Some of the 1st Hertford Scout group (photo Bernard Groom)
  • Local charities using the opportunity to talk about their services (photo Bernard Groom) Local charities using the opportunity to talk about their services (photo Bernard Groom)
     
(Steve Beeston photos courtesy of Steve Beeston photography).

There were nearly forty stalls. The list of exhibitors was as follows;

2nd Bengeo Scouts

Hertford Theatre (including Leaf cafe)

Aroma Brasil

Hertford, Ware & District Labour party

Army Cadets

Hertford & District Camera Club

Artshed

Hertford & Middlesex Wildlife Trust

Celtic Harmony

Hertford & Ware Beekeepers

Clair's Cakes

Hertford & Ware Crime Prevention

Cocktail stall

Highway Cycles

Crepe Heaven

Inner Wheel tea tent

East Herts Golf Club

Kisses 4 Kids

Everyone Active

Sad Cat Rescue

Forever Randell

Samaritans

Helping in Gambia

Scoops Icecream

Herts Building Preservation Trust

Spice Shack

Hertford Country Market

St Andrews Church

Hertford Library

St Johns Ambulance

Hertford Rugby Club (see beneficiary)

Street Pastors

Hertford Sea Scouts (see beneficiary)

Transition Hertford

(Other favourites such as Water Walkers etc were found at the fun-fair).

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Arena entertainment at the Castle

From 12pm to 5pm there were arena events and entertainment on the lawn at Hertford Castle.

The Mayor formally opened the proceedings at 1.30pm; see Opening.

There was a fabulous fancy dress competition at 2.30pm; see Fancy dress competition and children's activities at the Castle.

Groups or individuals were encouraged to perform in the arena, with preference being given to local participants, especially those who could bring a party feel to the proceedings! Crowds gathered to watch, and either sat in the sun with a picnic, ice-cream or Pimms, or danced along. 

Entertainments were as follows;

Starstreet Band - on stage 12.30-1.30pm

Zumba dance display by Everyone Active - 1.40-2.10pm

Wildeshausen Band - on stage 2.10-3.00 and again at 3.30pm (until their last puff!)

Fusion - Voices in Harmony - on stage 3-3.30pm

Many of these returned as crowd favourites from the previous two years, and all of them were super!

Photos of these events and performers are here;

  • The Mayor declaring the proceedings formally OPEN (photo Steve Beeston)! The Mayor declaring the proceedings formally OPEN (photo Steve Beeston)!
  • The Star Street band played a rousing set (photo Steve Beeston) The Star Street band played a rousing set (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Party time (photo Steve Beeston)! Party time (photo Steve Beeston)!
  • Everyone Active gave an exhausting Zumba display (photo Steve Beeston) Everyone Active gave an exhausting Zumba display (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Some people just danced at the sidelines (photo Steve Beeston)! Some people just danced at the sidelines (photo Steve Beeston)!
  • Playing for their supper (photo Steve Beeston) Playing for their supper (photo Steve Beeston)
  • The Wildeshausen Orchestra (photo Steve Beeston) The Wildeshausen Orchestra (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Sun, music and Pimms - not a bad afternoon (photo Steve Beeston) Sun, music and Pimms - not a bad afternoon (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Watching the arena events (photo Steve Beeston) Watching the arena events (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Fusion (Voices in Harmony) being introduced to the crowd (photo Steve Beeston) Fusion (Voices in Harmony) being introduced to the crowd (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Fusion (photo Steve Beeston) Fusion (photo Steve Beeston)
  • Fusion (photo Steve Beeston) Fusion (photo Steve Beeston)
  • The Wildeshausen band and their tour bus (photo Bernard Groom)! The Wildeshausen band and their tour bus (photo Bernard Groom)!
  • Some of the Wildeshausen band taking English tea between sets (photo Bernard Groom) Some of the Wildeshausen band taking English tea between sets (photo Bernard Groom)
     
(Steve Beeston photos courtesy of Steve Beeston photography).

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Fancy dress competition and children's activities at the Castle

Children were invited to follow in the footsteps of Princess Elizabeth (later Queen Elizabeth I, and who spent time at the castle as a child), and visit Hertford Castle dressed in their best Prince and Princess outfits.

The Mayor of Hertford, Cllr Chantal Geall, was there to meet them.

There was a fancy dress competition to find the best dressed Prince and Princess at 2.30pm in the arena.  Dozens of delightful princes and princesses showed off their superb costumes. The Mayor awarded prizes in each age group, and she was happy to award numerous bounty to all of the very deserving entrants! We're sure you'll agree from the slideshow that everyone looked wonderful.

Age groups for the competition were;

In addition, there was an opportunity to explore the Castle, following a trail to find the answers to questions about the young Princess Elizabeth and her life in Hertfordshire, as well as craft activities in the conservatory. Some children made crowns which they then wore in the fancy dress competition!

Grown ups were also welcome to visit the castle, which was open from midday to 4pm!  Tours were provided, and people were welcome to explore at leisure too.

  • The competition saw lots of fairytale princesses The competition saw lots of fairytale princesses
  • Princesses take a turn round the arena Princesses take a turn round the arena
  • Some of the tiny ones needed pointing in the right direction! Some of the tiny ones needed pointing in the right direction!
  • Pretty in pink Pretty in pink
  • Pretty in blue Pretty in blue
  • Pretty in purple Pretty in purple
  • Princes and princesses Princes and princesses
  • Reincarnation of the young Elizabeth I?! Reincarnation of the young Elizabeth I?!
  • Cute as buttons Cute as buttons
  • Preschool prizes Preschool prizes
  • Who has won? ... Who has won? ...
  • ... Everyone!  Chantall Geall gives out sparkly prizes ... Everyone! Chantall Geall gives out sparkly prizes
  • The older princesses line up The older princesses line up
  • Some of the Royalty wore crowns they'd made in the Castle Some of the Royalty wore crowns they'd made in the Castle
  • Everyone looked fantastic in their outfits Everyone looked fantastic in their outfits
  • Something we said? Something we said?
  • Mayor Chantal Geall giving out prizes to the older children Mayor Chantal Geall giving out prizes to the older children
  • A good haul! A good haul!
     
(All photos courtesy of Steve Beeston photography).

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Other events on the day

Other events were carefully co-ordinated to take place throughout the town on Carnival day so that spectators could enjoy a town-wide extravaganza!

Funfair on Hartham
A funfair took place on Hartham from midday to 8pm.

Model Railway Day at the Museum
There was no model railway exhibition, but the museum was open, and busy, and teas were served in the garden.

Open Churches Sunday
Most of the churches in town were open to the public, providing refreshments and a moment of tranquillity from the bustle outside.

Firestation open
The firestation was open for the day to coincide with carnival Sunday.

Classic Cars at Hartham
Unfortunately the scheduled display of classic cars at Hartham did not take place. Apologies to anyone who went to look at it.

Photos of some of these events are here;

  • Fun at the fair (photo Hilary Abraham)! Fun at the fair (photo Hilary Abraham)!
  • Hiya Mum (photo Hilary Abraham)! Hiya Mum (photo Hilary Abraham)!
  • Prizes galore (photo Hilary Abraham) Prizes galore (photo Hilary Abraham)
  • Wheee (photo Hilary Abraham)! Wheee (photo Hilary Abraham)!
     

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Charity collections

We wanted Hertford Carnival to benefit our local community, and charities were selected to be the beneficiaries of all monies raised on the day from collections.  We sought donations on the Castle gates, as well as on certain stalls, and appreciated all your generosity!

The chosen charities for 2014 were Hertford Sea Scouts (1st Hertford Scouts) and First aid equipment for Hertford Rugby Club; click here for more details. Approximately £4000 was raised for these deserving groups, thanks to the generosity of participants!

The charities are shown taking part in Carnival Day 2014 (see the stalls slideshow).

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Miscellaneous

Programmes were distributed on the day, and taken away as a souvenir!

St John first aiders were on hand during the day, with personnel visible in the Castle grounds.

Participants and spectators stuck to Health & Safety guidelines and thus ensured a safe and enjoyable day for all.

Professional and amateur photographers took a variety of pictures during the day. A selection has been included on these archive pages, and across the website as a whole. Thank you if you sent us yours.

If a photo containing your child appears on the website and you object, please contact the webmaster, describing the photo. Please make sure you add the email subject header 'Hertford Carnival'. We will be happy to take it down.

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Feedback

Numerous people contacted us verbally and via our email address and twitter page to comment on Carnival Day 2014. We were delighted to receive these positive comments - it made the hard work and months of planning worthwhile!

A selection of comments are included here;

Hilary Abraham; Just home after a sunny Sunday afternoon at Hertford Carnival & Fun fair! Family dodgem rides, I beat the hubby:0). Ice creams, candy floss, princess tiara making, bouncy castle, barbie plane rides and cuddly toys won by the girls! - Love Family Sundays! ... It was very busy at the Castle grounds, a good turnout. ... And I met the Mayor; she came into the conservatory while my daughter and I were making tiaras :0)

EastHertsParent ‏@EastHertsParent; Big crowds in Hertford for the @HertCarnival - loads of stalls and, of course, Pimms! ... Super busy and some great stalls... It was a lovely day out! ... Well done to all involved.

Herts & Ware SCC ‏@hertsandwarescc; Great day at Hertford Carnival.

Mayor of Hertford, Cllr Chantall Geall; (It was) a fantastic Carnival Day yesterday.  It was a very successful community event which everyone seemed to enjoy.  The carnival was a great success, and a tribute not only to the hard work of the organisers, Hertford Rotary, but to all the local organisations who took part with stalls and entertainment. There were huge crowds on Hertford Castle’s lawn, and hundreds of visitors to the castle itself. It was particularly good to welcome the Wildeshausen Orchestra back to Hertford again from our German twin town, and to see the dozens of children who dressed up as princes and princesses for the occasion.”

Cllr Jane Sartin; Hertford Carnival at the Castle made for a fantastic afternoon, and it felt like a real community event with so many different groups taking part.  Congratulations and thanks to everyone at Hertford Rotary who brought it together.

Chairperson Ann Broekhoven; It was a wonderful day. There was great community spirit around the place and the weather was so good. Everybody was having such a great time. Lots of children entered the prince and princess competition, which went down a treat; they all looked lovely. The music went down really well too; everybody enjoyed the music.

Feedback from stall-holders and performers was sought verbally during the day. Each and every one stated that they had enjoyed it. Stall-holders also reported good takings.

Member of Fusion (Voices in Harmony) Jason Hollis on twitter, in response to a posted video; I'm one of those voices and it was a pleasure to sing at today's event.

We hope we have addressed any negative feedback about a lack of a procession elsewhere on this website.

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Why no procession and a smaller-scale event at Hertford Castle?

The initial plans for the Carnival involved the traditional procession through the town, and the stalls and entertainment planned for the larger venue of Hartham.  Following last year’s success, we did not anticipate issues.

Unfortunately we did not receive enough applications to make the procession viable.  This was due to a variety of reasons all occurring simultaneously, including insurance or organisations’ money issues, some of last year’s participants taking a year off etc.  There are certain costs incurred by a procession (these rise sharply in the month before), and obviously spectators like a certain number of entries.  With a month to go, participants preparing their floats, and issues such as road closures demanding confirmation, we simply did not have the numbers and had to make the sad decision to cancel the procession.

We also had a certain number of stalls, but not as many as 2013 when we had over 70 on the great expense of Hartham: we felt that a smaller number would be lost.

We informed those signed up immediately, but then spent a week carefully considering various options, eg cancelling the day completely, other venues, contacting stall-holders to see if they would take part in a different event.  We used our media in this period to inform people of the fact that things were changing but that the how was necessarily uncertain.  As soon as a new plan was formulated, it was circulated on the website and on twitter.

We are indebted to the support of Hertford Town Council, who stepped in at this late stage to offer their help.  They offered the Castle grounds, suggested and ran royalty-themed activities including the popular fancy dress competition, and extra personnel to help steward.  Without the Town Council’s support and the Castle venue, Carnival day simply would not have happened at all.

Ultimately, we worked long and hard to organise and put on an afternoon of fun for the community, and we are grateful to all those who participated (or wanted to participate), who supported us, and everyone who came along and enjoyed the day.

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The Procession (n/a)

(As above) Unfortunately, due to not enough participants, the 2014 procession had to be cancelled. We had planned Carnival 2014 to be a big community day in the traditional carnival way, but needed a minimum number of floats to make it viable for costs and spectators. Thanks and apologies to those who did apply.

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Theme (n/a)

The original theme of Nursery Rhymes was abolished when the Committee had to take the decision to cancel the procession and change the venue of the stalls and entertainment. Instead, there was a certain royal flavour as children were encouraged to follow in the footsteps of the young Princess Elizabeth.

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Carnival Court (n/a)

For 2014, every boy and girl had the opportunity to appear as a carnival prince and princess as per our royal activities.

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Where now?

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Thank you...

... to everyone who came, supported or participated ... It wouldn't have happened without you!


Want to take part this year? See how you can join in;

Procession (n/a)

Run a stall

Perform in the arena

Or other ways;

Individuals

Businesses