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Streets awash with colourful costumes
THE STREETS of Old Basing were awash with colourful costumes as hundreds of people took part in the annual carnival parade.
In The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee year, the 41st Old Basing Carnival was suitably themed Proud To Be British – and people were keen to show off their patriotic pride along the half-mile route.
Last Saturday’s parade started from 1.30pm in Linden Avenue, and over 45 minutes, worked its way to the Recreation Ground.
The procession was led by Bill Prendergast, drum major of the Old Basing Corps of Drums, and was followed by bagpipers from the Southern Jacobites Pipes and Drums.
The two bands cleared the route some for the day’s stars – carnival princess Robyn Mulholland, carnival prince Nathan Day, escort Ben Condliffe, and attendant Ella Lewis, in a horse-drawn carriage.
The prince and princess, both nine, and pupils at St Mary’s Junior School, said they enjoyed their moment in the spotlight.
“I was really happy and excited to be in the carnival,” said Robyn. “In the morning, I was a bit nervous but still excited as being part of the carnival is a big thing.”
The prince and princess’ main job on the day was handing out trophies to the procession’s prize winners. Seven trophies were presented for the best costumes in seven different categories. The overall winners were, for the second year in a row, the Basing Cubs group.
Beryl Viner, chairwoman of the Old Basing parish carnival association, said the day had been a huge success. The annual event had originally been due to take place on June 16, but was cancelled due to poor weather.
And for Beryl, the day was extra special as it was her last one organising the parade. She, along with her late husband Graham, established the popular event in 1971, and she has been at the helm since.
“It has been a beautiful day and the turnout has been great,” said Beryl. “It is quite an emotional one for me. I am proud of what we have done. The best thing about it is how it brings the whole village together – everyone takes part.”
Cash raised from the day will be donated by the Old Basing Parish Carnival Association to organisations in the village.
Since 1987, more than £60,000 has been put into community causes.
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