Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Carnival Time in Somerset

Somerset is carnival county and this week is your last chance to catch this historical attraction in action for 2013.

Towns throughout Somerset host illuminated processions using floats in a tradition that stretches back as far as the 1600s when many parts of Somerset commemorated the Gunpowder Plot. The ‘circuits’ of processions end with grand fireworks displays and street entertainment making each event a mini festival.

A perfect way to brighten up dark November evenings, the floats are covered by hundreds of lightbulbs, bringing a glow to the county which thousands of visitors travel to see. Wells has the biggest illuminated carnival in the world!

The processions are the work of the Carnival Clubs that run throughout Somerset, preserving this popular tradition by fundraising and building and decorating the floats. The illuminated carts can be up to 100ft in length, 16ft high, and 11ft wide, and some have 20-30,000 light bulbs. The events are free, but donations are collected.

If you are travelling to Somerset this week, head to the carnival in Shepton Mallet on Wednesday 13th, Wells on Friday 15th and Glastonbury on Saturday 16th.

See the Somerset Carnival website for times and details and see the Helpful Holidays website for late availability or to plan your tour of the Somerset Carnivals next year.