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Town urged to support their carnival

PUBLISHED: 09:00 21 August 2009 | UPDATED: 08:27 01 August 2010

THE Beccles Carnival Committee is urging townspeople to get behind this year's event- or risk losing it for the first time since the second world war.

The committee, who are busy applying the finishing touches to almost a years worth of preparations, say they have so far had a very positive response in the build up to the event.

THE Beccles Carnival Committee is urging townspeople to get behind this year's event- or risk losing it for the first time since the second world war.

The committee, who are busy applying the finishing touches to almost a years worth of preparations, say they have so far had a very positive response in the build up to the event.

However due to the increasing difficulties in putting on the showcase, with extra paperwork, funding problems, and a thinning carnival committee, they are desperate for Becclesians to show that they still want it to be a part of their town.

Annette Tackley, who is on this year's committee, said it was a case of “use it or lose it.”

“If it's not supported this year it won't go ahead next year,” she said. “If people are not supporting it, perhaps they don't want it. It's nearly a years planning to put on the event, and the amount of paper work and work behind the scenes is horrendous.

“There are only five of us this year, which has made it extremely more difficult. People are working full time and have got families- my husband thinks he's my personal secretary at this time of year!”

Numbers at the carnival have lagged in recent years, and resulted in a £3,000 deficit in funds for 2009.

And although the committee have managed to pull that debt back, and have settled the bills, they are keen for people to turn out for the event and show that they want to keep it going.

Mrs Tackley said that there are records of the event going back as far as the late 1800s, and that they suggest it has been going every year since then apart from during the second world war.

“It would be a real shame if it didn't go ahead next year because it's so good for the town,” she said. “There's a real buzz in the town when it's on. We would lose the holiday makers- people book their holidays to come in on the boats to coincide with next weekend when there will be extra things to do. It's also good for local shop and hotels- everybody benefits.

“It's good fun and it's a real community event that brings a lot of people together. We've got lots of new activities, plus some of the old favourites. We've tried to do something for everybody.”

She added that she was confident people would turn out to support it. “Everything's been very positive from the town,” she said. “The comments have been very, very supportive. It was a very negative start, but things have come on much better than we could have hoped.”

The Carnival takes place next Saturday and Sunday from 2-6pm each day and is free to enter.

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