Carnival Day
Take Part
Have a
Nice Day
Saturday 7th June 1997
Theme: "Space and Science Fiction"
Project: St. Michael's Hospital Trust Fund
Queen &
Project &

View From The Field

1997 Programme of Events (As Advertised)
  • 1.00 Floats form at Lakes Road
  • 2.00 Judging of Floats
  • 2.00 Sideshows Open at Meadowside
  • 2.30 Procession leaves Lakes Road
  • 3.30 Procession arrives at Meadowside
  • 4.15 Grand Opening by Carnival Queen
  • 4.15 Battling Cumberland Giants
  • 4.40 Witham Twirlettes
  • 4.55 The Suffolk Royals
  • 5.15 The Dunmow Majorettes
  • 5.30 The Red Hackle Pipe Band
  • 6.00 Braintree Dimensions
  • 6.20 Battling Cumberland Giants
  • 6.45 Jazzercise
  • 7.00 Wrestling
  • 8.00 Live Group - Tequila Sunrise
  • 9.00 Grand Draw
  • 9.15 Live Group - Tequila Sunrise
  • 10.30 Good Night

Other Attractions

  • Steam Gallopers
  • Dive Bomber
  • Big Wheel
  • Dodgems
  • Sizzler
  • The Round Up

Kiddies Korner

  • Playbus - Back by popular demand
  • Doc Spinoff
  • Wonder Wizard and Loco the Clown
  • Children's Rides

1997 Street Procession Entries and Winners
Class 1a
Veteran Vehicles
1. Mike Allard
2. Steven Barrer
Class 1b
Decorated Vehicles
1. Concord Autograss Racing
2. Braintree Auto Club
3. Concord Autograss Racing
> Essex Chronicle Ltd.
Class 2a
Voluntary Organisations (under 30ft)
1. Rachel Darby
2. Blackwater Housing Association
3. Lancaster Way Christian Fellowship
Class 2b
Voluntary Organisations (over 30ft)
1. Braintree Youth Mini Rugby Club
2. Braintree Divorced & Separated Club
3. 1st, 2nd & 7th Braintree Brownies
> Braintree 4th District Scouts
> Air Training Corps 158 Squadron
Class 3
Commercial & Industrial Firms
1. Post Office
2. Benson School of Motoring
3. Slimming World
> P.A. Music Promotions
Class 4
Dancing Schools and Playgroups
1. Goldingham Pre-School
2. 50s Gymnastics Club
Class 5
Any other Public Houses, Action or Street Groups, Individuals
1. Braintree Auto Club
2. Bocking End Congregational Church
3. Kings Head Public House
Class 6
Riding Schools, Pony Clubs, Harness Horses
1. Mr. Webster
2. Mr. & Mrs. Dedham
> Mrs. Eves Pony Club
Class 7
Visiting Queens
1. Brightlingsea
2. Burnham-on-Crouch
3. Witham
> Silver End
> Trimley
> Tiptree
> Great Bentley
> Coggeshall
Chairman's Cup 1. 1st, 2nd & 7th Braintree Brownies
Windows Display Competition  

1997 Carnival Queen and Attendants
1997 Queen & Court
Kelly Adams, Carnival Queen

I have really enjoyed my year as Braintree & Bocking Carnival Queen. It has been a good experience, Being Queen has given me a lot more confidence and I wish the new Queen a lot of success in her year.

Emma Glazier, Carnival Princess

I've enjoyed my year as Carnival Princess. Being chosen was a privilege and I would like to say thank you to Pat for making my dress. I hope 1998 Princesses have as much fun as me.

Laurren Hughes, Carnival Princess

My mane is Laurren Hughes and I was picked as carnival Princess last year. During my year I have had a wonderful time. We have been to lots of Carnivals all over Essex. My favourite time was when we visited the Hospitals at Christmas; I really enjoyed meeting all of the people.

The day I was crowned was a day I will remember for the rest of my life, I felt so special. I am looking forward to crowning the new Princesses in May.

I would like to thank Robert and Pat, Tom and Betty and John and Jean for taking care of me throughout the year and I would like to wish everyone good luck for the following year ahead of them.

1997 Project and Donations

The 1997 Carnival Procession raised a record £1,115 to which the £77 Christmas Eve collection was added.

A 'rounded up' figure of £1,200 was donated to St. Michael's Hospital Trust Fund towards the purchase of a 'Pegasus Overture' mattress for particular needs.

The Pegasus Overture is an alternating pressure mattress overlay which can aid in the prevention of pressure sore development.

It will be used for patients who are assessed to be up to medium risk of developing a pressure sore. Mobility and nutritional problems are just two of the factors that can make this more likely. It can also aid in the promotion of healing.

Cost approx £3000 - £4000

1997 Programme Article - Braintree Carnival 1997
My 1997 attempt at wit and humour. Please try and stick with it as the ending is slightly better than the start. Snappy title though, it took me hours to think of that.

I was in the local boozer, the Clogg and Whippet, a few weeks ago having a chat with Mel Gibson. He was fascinated with my humorous anecdotes of our antics at the Braintree & Bocking Carnival and we talked for hours. He has never been to a Carnival and he frantically took notes all along so watch out for the movie, apparently I am to be played by Brad Pitt.

Now you may not believe a word of this but it's true as there is nothing quite to compare with the Carnival in his native Australia or even Los Angeles. Ok so there is Disneyland, Universal Studios, Hollywood and the like, but apart from these obvious attractions there is nothing quite like the Carnival. Hence we are fairly unique here in Braintree so think your selves lucky. Well to be honest this is somewhat misleading as I write this from my home in Leeds. Mind you the last Carnival I went to here comprised of 15 tombola stalls, 3 Majorette troupes and was all over by 6 p.m.

Mel often pops in for a chat at the local. He chats with all the regulars and we talk about movie ideas and we offer 'constructive' criticism of his many screen performances. We have even given him some of his best scenes. Old Mrs Higgins, the landlady, was the inspiration behind the dislocated arm in Lethal Weapon 2 after a nasty accident with a spilt pint and a packet of Twiglets.

Unfortunately, work commitments means he is unable to visit us as often as he used to. However, this does mean we have more time for Nigel Mansel who has become a regular since quitting the Formula 1 circuit. The trouble is if I had 10p for every time I have heard "Have I told you about how I won the world championship", I would have 75p. Mind you Paul Hogan was not much better but he has not been in so much since his career took a nosedive.

For some reason people accused me of lying when I submitted this article and suggested it could not be used as 'it's not true'. I don't know why but that's people for you always quick to judge and full of prejudices and strange concepts of right and wrong.

For example, I could write 'bum' here and nobody would say a word of complaint. Well hopefully none will or else I'm in deep doggy doo-doo. However, if I was to chose something stronger such the "*" word (see even the letter has been censored) what would happen then. Well, first the editor would have to ask what it meant. Once it had been explained to him he would quite rightly ban it (see above). I've been censored before and you get used to it after a while and life would go on.

What if however, horror of all known horrors, it slipped through the net and was published by mistake. The storm of protest would be unheard of in Braintree's long and torrid history. The B & W Times would be inundated with a letter from a 'Concerned Resident' with the usual tripe about 'if a young child was to read such vile and gratuitous filth . . . etc'. The church would condemn the programme as 'the word of Beelzebub'. Copies would be gathered together by religious cults and burned to rid the earth of such penned pollution. Searching questions would be asked at full council meetings (well this is fiction isn't it).

All the publicity surrounding this would make the 1997 programme the first million seller requiring no less than 27 reprints and making it into the June issue of the Times Top 10 book list. Obviously I would have to go undercover to avoid the constant press attention and countless fatwah issued against my life. I would like to point out at this stage that I am available for chat shows and Breakfast TV providing sufficient security can be arranged and a suitable appearance fee negotiated.

The more I think about it the better it sounds. All this fuss and I have not even written anything. It's got to be worth a try. Oh &*?# it, I would never get away with it - see.

There's just one thing I would like to leave you with until we meet again next year:

If you are keeping your head while all those around you are losing theirs then you have probably misunderstood the situation.


1997 Programme Article - A Fable As Told By Theo White Bear Number 4

All was quiet in the large storehouse on the eve of Carnival Day. The stalls and prizes were carefully locked away, alarmed and security tagged as usual. The elephants and the pandas had grown weary of the "Will it be me this year" brigade.

The large elephant Plendy, was about to make an announcement. She was going to shock the prizes like never before.

"The children don't want us anymore" she bellowed from the top of the second highest carnival pole.

There was a mumbling and a general hush spread through the storehouse.

"The children don't want us anymore" she repeated. "They want action toys with gripping arms and violent tendencies, they don't want us anymore. Did you notice how they brushed past Fred and his pals last year. That'll be us tomorrow unless we buck our ideas up. We have to make them want us again, let them know what good therapy having a hug with a cuddly bundle is. Well it's either that or we escape!" she exclaimed.

The storehouse erupted, just like those old people in the House of Commoners place on the news every night. The coconuts were in a real state. Milk was beginning to seep from one or two who just couldn't comprehend how they were going to be fluffy.

The footballs said they were going to be all right, on a roll they said what with all the hype last year and our lads and how well they did and oh what a shame about that poor boy and the penalties. Blackie, one of the larger bears interrupted the footballs. "Always repeating themselves and full of useless trivia like who scored the only goal in the 1978 F.A. Cup Final."

"We have to act now if we are going to get to the station before the next security check, are we agreed?"

"I don't know if we should, those people do take quite good care us. They go to great pains to ensure we are cute and they manage to get us cheaper so that the little children can have an expensive prize" said a little jointed teddy who had been with the carnival since it began, albeit only as a mascot.

Plendy called for quiet. There was quiet. "We have to escape now if we're ever going to get away."

The Pandas began to form a long line just near the window of the storehouse. Plendy organised the opening of the window and they arranged enough boxes to climb out. It was a long drop but they managed it. First went the Pandas then Plendy's elephant friends. The bears remained. Teddies are always favourites with children they thought. The Pandas had hidden themselves well in the tall grasses - just like Marines on covert military missions. The elephants were a little noisier but successful all the same.

Plendy split everyone into pairs, a Panda and an Elephant, and they were told to make for the station. She had a friend there who would help them, a nice little black locomotive called Timmy.

"I don't know what happened to them while they were out there", told Theo The White Bear Number 4, "but within three hours all were back with us. All except Plendy and all were quiet and happy. The whereabouts of Plendy is still unknown."

"Carnival Day was a great success. The sun blazed down on all the happy entertained people of Braintree and Bocking and children and adults alike all adored the prizes."

"There are rumours," whispered Theo, "that a rather fat gentleman in a red suit and big black boots had given the escapees a good talking to about how crucial they all are in the upbringing and welfare of baby humans. He was also kind enough to give them a lift on his sledge-like transport back home to the storehouse."

"It will soon be our turn to help these baby humans develop and learn, we are to be this years Carnival prizes." Theo announced joyfully.

The strange thing about this repeated fable is that none of the present Carnival Committee members has ever seen or remembered seeing a White Bear Number 4 called Theo. Perhaps he never existed.

Perhaps he only comes 'alive' on the eve of Carnival Day solely to tell his story to the anxious, nervous new Carnival prizes.

Perhaps Theo is really Plendy in disguise - Who knows?