Future of Chepstow carnival in balance

UNDER THREAT: Revellers at a previous Chepstow carnival

UNDER THREAT: Revellers at a previous Chepstow carnival

First published in News

THE future of Chepstow Carnival is under threat after its organisers have pulled out, blaming “a lack of manpower.”

In a letter to Chepstow town council seen by the Argus, Chepstow Round Table group treasurer Stuart Dent said the event, which has seen thousands pack the streets over the years, could be off indefinitely.

He wrote: “During recent times many organisations have recorded a gradual decline in membership and Chepstow Round Table is no exception.

“It is therefore with regret that Chepstow Round Table has made the decision that due to lack of manpower, they, as a single organisation, will be unable to organise, manage and run the Chepstow Carnival this year and in future years.”

Mr Dent told the Argus: “We have considered all the activities we put on throughout the year, from the fireworks on November 5 to charity dinners and made a very difficult decision. As the carnival is exceptionally resource intensive we felt it would have to be cut from this year’s programme.”

Despite the cancellation of the 2012 renewal due to bad weather, the event was going from strength to strength, according to Round Table secretary Robin Harvey.

He said more than 15 floats and up to 20 stalls were due to entertain the crowds from the Severn Bridge Social Club to the river side, an increase on previous years.

The letter goes on to say the Round Table would give £1,000 to an organisation willing to organise the carnival and the relevant documentation.

Mr Harvey appealed for interested parties to get in touch.

“I would like to see the carnival continue and for that to happen we need good support,” he said yesterday.

Chepstow councillor Armand Watts said: “Chepstow Carnival in its heyday was the major summer event as far as Chepstow is concerned.

“A lot of community groups put a tremendous amount of effort into it and it brings people to the town centre.

“If it’s not put on a lot of people will lose out and the next generation will miss an enjoyable event for the community.”

The matter is due to be discussed at next week’s Chepstow Town Council meeting.

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