Sodbury Festival gets underway today

The carnival during last year's Sodbury Festival

The carnival during last year's Sodbury Festival

First published in News by

SODBURY Festival’s celebrated carnival day will be marked with a flypast by two Battle of Britain planes this year.

The annual procession of floats through Chipping Sodbury’s medieval High Street will also have the crowds looking to the skies as a spitfire and a hurricane fly over the town.

The official RAF Battle of Britain Memorial aircraft will be visible, weather permitting, shortly before the main parade.

Festival chairman Brian Hardy said preparations had been finalised but has warned, if no new volunteers come forward for next year’s event, the 10-day festival each June may be forced to fold.

“Everything is prepared, the bunting is up and we are looking forward to a special attraction this year with the flypast by a Spitfire and a Hurricane.

“Weather permitting the two aircraft will do three passes over the town at 1.50pm on carnival day.”

He added: “The current festival committee needs help to keep the show on the road for future years.

“Most of the current festival committee have been doing the job for many years, two for the entire 29 years of Chipping Sodbury Festival, and we are looking for additional help if the festival is to continue.”

An annual meeting will take place in September. “We would love to see some new faces prepared to pick up some of the duties,” he added. “Yes it is hard work, but can be very rewarding and fun.”

The 2014 Sodbury Festival kicks off this Friday, June 13 and runs until Sunday, June 22 with carnival day taking place on Saturday, June 21.

The theme for this year’s festival is Disney and many local schools are busily preparing floats for the carnival procession featuring famous cartoon characters and Disney’s famed princes and princesses.

There will be several roaming Disney characters throughout the day to entertain visitors and Chipping Sodbury Lions Club, which organises carnival day, is holding a charity street fair from 10am to 5pm.

As well as games and attractions, there will be shopping stalls, hot food and refreshments available and performances by Yate Star Twirlers, Pure Dance Crew, New Generation Dance Group, Dodington Parish Band, the Panache Street Band, Avon Glen Pipes and Drums and the Crusader Cheerleaders.

St John’s Church will stage a local schools art exhibition and will be open for visits and refreshments (10.30am-4.30pm) and tower visits (2-4.30pm). Judging of the best dressed stall takes place at 11.30am and prizes will be presented at 4.30pm.

Other festival highlights include Jimmy Cricket’s Laughter Show on Saturday, June 14, Music in the Street on Tuesday, June 17 and a new addition for this year, a fashion show on Wednesday, June 18 featuring items from local clothing stores.

“This year’s programme is a mix of old favourites and some brand new events,” said Mr Hardy.

“All the favourites are back including Jim Elsworth’s Ever Changing Sodbury, concerts in the church, the Last Night of the Proms - Chipping Sodbury Style of course and much more.”

For full details visit www.chippingsodburyfestival.co.uk or pick up a programme leaflet in most shops in the town. Tickets for the main evening events are on sale in Farrago and Out of the Blue.

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