Carnival royalties are down this year
I WRITE with reference to the article in last week's Journal about the lack of royalty for this year's Shepton Mallet carnival.
I believe the royalty is still chosen by how much money the entrants collect by knocking doors around the town. I don't know if anyone else has noticed, but not many people feel able or willing to part with their cash nowadays, and as such, I'm not sure whether a young teen girl would actually feel comfortable knocking on doors and asking for money. I know I wouldn't.
Perhaps a new, slightly more enjoyable way could be sought for choosing the carnival royalty?
Also, on the subject, I feel sad to think that Shambles is not able to put an entry out on the road this year, but maybe it is time for the other three Shepton Mallet carnival clubs to have their place in the spotlight this year.
Highwayman Carnival Club and Mojo Carnival club have already entered five carnivals this year. With Mojo CC being awarded first place in their class at Frome Carnival and Highwayman receiving a respectable array of second and third places already throughout the Wessex Circuit.
These two clubs represent Shepton Mallet at eight towns on the Wessex Circuit of Carnivals, and yet still receive little acknowledgment from the carnival committee or the town. These clubs may not present 100ft-long floats but still work hard to raise funds and build an entry.
When the county carnivals start they will be joined by the new, but equally as hard- working, Thatchers Juvenile Carnival Club, now in its second year.
People complain that there is nothing for children to do in the town, but carnival really is the jewel in the crown of Shepton Mallet's entertainment. With four clubs to choose from, always in need of new members, there is something for everyone, whether you enjoy the serious side of carnival, or prancing around the streets in a silly costume making people smile, there is a Shepton Mallet-based club for you somewhere.
Enjoy the carnivals this year, and when you see one of the smaller Shepton Mallet entries, do give them a cheer. They may be smaller but still work tremendously hard to represent the town and put on such a fantastic free show.