The Grove Park Carnival has been resurrected after more than 30 years’ absence.
Following on from the success of the Chinbrook Dog Show, the organisers decided to build on the rapid growth and turn a one-day event into a weekend of festivities, so those who don’t like dogs can still join in the fun. After all, 2 days isn’t much more work when one of them is so well established.
This year sees a talent contest, a parade complete with Carnival Queen, various workshops for children (circus, comedy), plus a plethora of performing artists, from professional stilt walkers to local dance troupes showing off their moves, as well as the ever popular Dog Show.
However, with 2 days comes double the costs as well as new ones.
The dog show is the established feature for the Sunday. Saturday sees the start of the Talent Contest, which we believe, will swallow up the bulk of our budget with stage, PA and intermittent performer fees, as we endeavour to make this as professional as possible.
We have just over £3000 in the bank. This is contingency carried over from last year and a grant from Lewisham Council. This is our only income apart from what we collect from our own stalls, pitch fees and dog show entries, none of which is guaranteed. We are hosting a fundraising Quiz-Bingo evening on May 19 to try to raise extra funds
We also have additional overnight security expenses, and it is anticipated there may be road closure fees from the council. We also have the cost of prizes to bear, as the person who kindly donated them in the past has now moved out of the area. Rubbish clearance fees have doubled over the two days, and we hope to produce 20,000 leaflets to be dropped through letterboxes, as well as posters, banners and an advert in the local papers to maximise publicity.
Our Parade route has been approved by the council, and is just now awaiting permission from the police. The council have offered to write the necessary traffic orders. Our Carnival Queen is Mzz Kimberley, along with other Carnival Princesses from the local area. Kimberley will also be hosting the Talent Contest.
Grove Park Carnival is an exciting project, and it is heartening to see so many community groups and organisations wanting to take part to showcase their talents, and highlight what is on offer within the local community.
It is the much anticipated event in one of the most deprived parts of the borough, and we hope to continue to build on our success and bring a much needed boost to the local residents, community and economy. Our aim is to put the Ooooh in to Groove Park!