Colour and light spectacular as the carnival comes to town
Thousands of people gathered in the streets to watch an annual illuminated spectacle at one of the Westcountry's most amazing carnivals.
Anarchy ruled at Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival on Saturday night, with nine-times winners Gremlins knocked off their pedestal and a superb evocation of anarchists derailing an underground train capturing the spirit of the night, if not the top points.
Crowds gathered to watch the astonishing two-mile, two-hour parade of creativity, which lit the night with an 18-megawatt display involving 250,000 light bulbs.
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With Bridgwater's own Gremlins Carnival Club setting the standard as the top carnival entry for the last nine years, the competition stakes were incredibly high. But although Gremlins produced a typically thrilling feature cart in Xtinct, with skeletal tyrannosaurs and pterodactyls, they were beaten into second place by Ramblers Carnival Club's Swarm Force, which included a sci-fi attack force of giant bees.
The heroism and horror of the Paris Uprising as told in Les Miserables has won Gemini Carnival Club of Ilminster top place on the South Somerset carnival circuit, and the downtrodden triumphed once again with first place in the open tableau category.
Proof that the talent to create original and spectacular themes is spread far and wide came with Huckyduck Carnival Club of Coleford's realisation of Jeff Wayne's War of the Worlds. Spider-legged silver aliens bestrode a ruined landscape, in which even Army cannons gave no protection to terrified Londoners, and won the Huckyducks second place.
A stampede of realistic bison won Masqueraders Carnival Club of Meare the open feature award, while Bridgwater's Ramblers took the local tableau with Priscilla.
It may launch in Bridgwater, but over the next two weeks the biggest illuminated carnival in Europe will also be winding through the streets of Burnham-on-Sea, Weston-super-Mare, North Petherton, Shepton Mallet, Wells and Glastonbury.
Midsomer Norton is not on the official county carnival circuit, but will also be welcoming some of the annual stalwarts on November 14.