Carnival Day
Take Part
Have a
Nice Day
Saturday 6th June 1998
Theme: "Stage and Screen"
Project: Home Start
Queen &
Project &

View From The Field

1998 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
  • 4.20 Braintree Dimensions
  • 4.30 Canine Capers
  • 4.50 Blue Falcons Gymnastic Display Team
  • 5.15 The Epping Forest Pipe Band
  • 5.30 Ben Lester and his Comedy Car
  • 6.00 Braintree District Scout and Guide Band
  • 6.15 Blue Falcons Gymnastic Display Team
  • 6.45 Ben Lester and his Silly Cycle Act
  • 7.00 Wrestling
  • 8.00 Live Group - Cleavage
  • 9.00 Grand Draw
  • 9.15 Live Group - Cleavage
  • 10.30 Good Night

Other Attractions

  • Steam Gallopers
  • Dive Bomber
  • Big Wheel
  • Dodgems
  • The Round Up
  • Kiddies Corner
  • Mr. Topper and his
    Circus Workshop

1998 Street Procession Entries and Winners
Class 1a
Veteran Vehicles
1. Stapleton's Tyre & Exhaust Centre
Class 1b
Decorated Vehicles
1. Concord Autograss Racing
2. Braintree Motaquip
3. Concord Autograss Racing
Class 2a
Voluntary Organisations (under 30ft)
1. Bocking End Congregational Church
2. 7th Braintree Brownies
3. Lancaster Way Christian Fellowship
Class 2b
Voluntary Organisations (over 30ft)
1. Braintree Youth Mini Rugby Club
2. Sporting 77 Football Club
3. Braintree Hospitals Support Group
Class 3
Commercial & Industrial Firms
1. Tesco
2. Braintree Leisure Centre
3. Benson School of Motoring
Class 4
Dancing Schools and Playgroups
1. White Court Dance Unlimited
Class 5
Any other Public Houses, Action or Street Groups, Individuals
1. J.G. Yacoob
2. Sibling Rivalry
Class 6
Riding Schools, Pony Clubs, Harness Horses
1. Mr & Mrs Dedman
2. Nicola Webster
Class 7
Visiting Queens
1. Witham
2. Coggeshall
3. Burnham-on-Crouch
Chairman's Cup 1. Braintree Leisure Centre
Windows Display Competition 1. Second To None
2. Hannays
3. Talking Heads

1998 Carnival Queen and Attendants
1998 Queen & Court
Nicola Brown, Carnival Queen

I have enjoyed my year as Braintree and Bocking Carnival Queen. I have done many different things which have all been fun. I hope the 1999 Carnival Queen has as much fun as I have and I wish her a lot of success in her year.

Kelly Nunn, Carnival Princess
The day I got picked for Carnival Princess, it was a dream come true. I really enjoyed going to all the different Carnivals. I'd like to thank Pat, Robert and everyone else for making my year so special and I know the next Carnival princesses will have a lovely year like I did.
Charlotte Sims, Carnival Princess
Throughout the year I have enjoyed all the Carnivals and Fetes, with Kelly as Princess and Nicola as Queen. I would like to thank Pat for making my dress and all of you for taking us to all the places like Carnivals and Fetes. I have had a brilliant time. It is a time I won't forget.

1998 Project and Donations

The proceeds of the 1998 street collection amounted to £1,113. This was rounded up and the sum of £1,200 duly handed over to a most deserving local charity HOME-START. A registered charity, HOME-START exists to provide help in their own homes to young families under stress.

There are many young families in this modern age who have no close family or friends to offer support with day-to-day problems encountered by us all. This is particularly true for those with at least one child under school age, who are the target for help from HOME-START.

Various sources such as a health visitor, social worker, midwife or even organisations such as Relate would initially put a family in touch with HOME-START. Trained volunteers who form a relationship with the family in their own home provide assistance to families. Any one volunteer is unlikely to be involved with more than three families at one time and often only one. This means that close support can be given in dealing with a wide range of problems. Visits by the volunteer are usually once or twice a week but more where there is a crisis. A volunteer may liaise with a family for just a few months or this may extend to a year or more in certain cases.

So why is the money needed if all the work is done by volunteers? HOME-START is a very cost effective organisation but there are certain unavoidable expenses such as rent, telephone, insurance etc. and the volunteers out of pocket expenses. In addition a small team of paid staff are necessary to maintain the organisation and continuity. The organisation has been funded in the past by official bodies but this source has been reduced. The donation from the Carnival helped cover this shortfall enabling the organisation to seek alternative funding.

1998 Programme Article - Full Metal Bracket
The following article appeared in the 1998 programme written by a 1997 'carnival virgin'.

Anyone who has spent a Sunday afternoon wrestling with an MFI wardrobe or a Habitat bookcase is going to understand this. As the proud owner of at least three IKEA alum keys I consider myself rather handy with a flat-pack, experienced enough to know that the step-by-step instruction drawings complete with Japanese subtitles for the hard of understanding, are designed only to confuse and should be destroyed immediately. I was therefore pretty confident about my first flat-packed carnival.

I had arrived in Braintree the night before, a new recruit for Captain Fun's crack squad of Carnival Marines and I now had my first sight of the enemy as two trailer-loads of brightly painted planks, boards, posts and poles arrived on the battlefield. Somewhere in there were a dozen or so small, simple, traditional carnival sideshows just how difficult could it be.

Three hours later the Captain's strategic planning meeting was still underway. The positioning of a stall depends greatly on the previous years performance, the gradient of the field, angle of the sun, direction of the wind, the name of the stall holder, the Name of the Rose, the Jewel of the Nile, the Hound of the Baskervilles...

Privately I thought all this planning was a bit girly, almost like reading the instructions but I soon changed my tune when at last we started assembling the first stalls. These things are fiendishly complicated. Obviously designed by some higher intelligence as a supreme test of strength and cunning (or in my case, brute force and ignorance). I marveled at the infinite variety of ways to join plank A to board B, post Y to pole Z and wobbly bent thing ¥ to stick uppy bit ¶. Every stall is different and so newly learned skills from one are absolutely useless on the next. My special admiration is reserved for "Striker", a technical masterpiece with four independently pivoting limbs of varying lengths, which the Captain mischievously sited on a gentle slope for added difficulty. Imagine the site of a newborn deer staggering uncertainly onto long, unsteady legs. Now imagine the deer is over 25 feet tall. Now imagine it is blind drunk and trying to hug you ("Aaargh, you're my best mate, you are..."), and you might have some idea what I mean.

It took two days to get the stalls up and, after a fabulously successful and sunny Carnival, four hours to get them down, disassembled and packed away. I know that even with the assistance of three generations of the Captain's family it will take just as long to put them up again this year. I have learned my lesson well and developed a grudging respect for my opponent. Somebody warn Striker that this time it's personal.

You think putting the Carnival together is an easy job?

Go tell that to the Marines.

1998 Programme Article - Shopping Blues
Here we have my 1998 effort for the programme. I guess it is what you would call therapy as it allowed me to have a rant about one of my pet hates

There is a craze slowly sweeping across the country like a rampant tornado. I for one do not like it one little bit so I thought I would take this opportunity to have a rant about it.

I refer of course to shopping. Now I do not like shopping in either of its forms. By which I mean the 'necessities' shop for essentials like bread, milk, tea, beer, veg, pizza, beer, Sugar Puffs, chocolate, pizza, beer etc. and the 'casual' shop.

Now the first is unfortunately, as its name suggests, is required of me. Simply put, if I do not tag along to lend a hand then I don't eat. This I have learnt to cope with over the years as once a fortnight the old Neanderthal survival instinct kicks in and I find myself trawling the aisles of the local Asda much the way I imagine our ancestors did. This happened shortly after Mrs. Pre-Neanderthal sent Mr P-N down from the trees to look for a good shoe shop. Unfortunately it never occurred to early man that if he had stayed in the trees in the first place he would not have needed to buy a pair of shoes.

The second is a far more curious affair and one that I believe is a positive danger to the society in which we live. The 'casual' shop started life many years ago as a simple 'trip into town' usually to buy something specific like a coat, a hat or a shirt. This went on for years but then some idiot came along and invented the term consumerism. This must have happened in the Eighties when 'ism was being tagged onto any word that looked like it needed a bit of a lift. The world recession of the 90's tried to dampen the evil tide but secretly the 'ism inventors were planning their take over. Out of the ashes of the recession grew the new phoenix in the form of the 'out-of-town Shopping Centre.

No longer was shopping a casual trip when required but the 'joyful experience for the entire family to enjoy'. It has become a social activity. People no longer spend their weekends at the Zoo or in the park. Families spend time drooling over maps and pamphlets planning next weekends shopping trip. The Channel Tunnel means that even the continent is not beyond our reach. We can now even jump onto Concorde and nip over to New York for a quick weekend shop as in Absolutely Fabulous.

I know I am strange, abnormal, a freak of modern day consumerism and I just hope that there are more of you out there. We Shopperphobics must unite and rise up against the imperialistic tyranny. Alternatively, we can just continue to trudge along and say 'Yes dear, very nice dear.' at the appropriate time without being prompted by our other half.

Now then, what, you may ask, set me off down this particular rant?  Well it was Easter Eggs but that's another story ...

1998 Programme Article - Shopping Blues Two

Note: The following article appeared a couple of pages after the above It was an effort to pretend that the above had a point and had been cleverly planned to lead on to this.

Some of you out there in what is commonly referred to as the 'real word' may have read the previous article relating to shopping and be thinking - 'Oh no, that's me. I shop therefore I am. How can I break out of this endless cycle of constant shopping?' Well relax, fret no longer, a solution is at hand. Simply follow these three little steps and you can have a break from shopping for at least two weeks:

  1. Gather together all the money you own in the world. This should include all of those 'rainy day' bank accounts, the 'penny pot' and the loose change down the back of the sofa. Please note, you can keep the fluff, mouldy socks and any assorted body parts found during this search.
  2. Take it along to the Carnival Procession and stuff half of it into the first collecting tin that passes your way. Remember it must be the first as the longer you hesitate the more likely you are to go shopping with it.
  3. Take the remainder along to the Carnival Field and buy 500 tickets on the 'Win a Fluffy Thing with Big Floppy Ears' stall.
Now I cannot guarantee that this will cure your shopping affliction permanently but it will do wonders for the days takings and our nominated charity.