Hunt to find lost Gwent carnival queen

The first Mathern carnival queen, centre, with her attendants in 1964. Organisers are hoping she will be joining in the reunion parade.

The first Mathern carnival queen, centre, with her attendants in 1964. Organisers are hoping she will be joining in the reunion parade.

First published in News by

ORGANISERS of a 50th anniversary Gwent village fete are close to tracking down all 50 of their former carnival queens – but still need to find one more.

Mathern village fete is this year celebrating its golden anniversary, and organisers have managed to track down 49 of their former carnival queens.

This year’s fete, on Saturday, September 6, will see a reunion parade of many of the annual carnival’s queens and organisers since the first event in 1964.

But the hunt is still on to find the 1976 queen, Michelle Bevan, who recently celebrated her 50th birthday.

Caroline Graham, who is helping to organise the event, said: “It would be great if we could trace the 1976 queen. She moved from Mathern in the late 1970s but is believed to be living in the Cwmbran area.”

Michael Harbinson, who was one of the founding organisers of the event and worked on the committee, will be on site to open this year’s event.

The fete will include its traditional competitions, including a photography contest and award for the best baked lemon drizzle cake.

Children can also enter a biscuit decorating competition and art contest, as well as an opportunity to submit their home-grown sunflowers to be crowned the tallest in the village.

Entries for the scarecrow competition, which should all be registered by Friday, September 5, will be displayed on the main road through Mathern.

The judging of this year’s carnival queen will begin at 2pm, with Mr Harbinson officially opening the fete at 2.15pm.

The Severn Tunnel Band, formed in 1923, will be performing, and visitors can also enjoy go-karting, pedal racers, a fortune teller, treasure hunt and tug of war competition as well as the more traditional stalls.

A local dance school will also be putting on a display, and in the evening, the festivities will continue with a 1960s disco, live music, quiz and hog roast at the athletic club.

To coincide with the 50th anniversary, Mathern Village Hall is also holding a photography exhibition featuring photos of the changes to the village over the past years.

This will be held on Saturday, September 6 and Sunday, September 7.

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