Dedicated to the Memory of Reg Johnson
As we embarked on the festivities this year, MC Mike Barnes expressed the wish that the Community would “Do him proud!” Needless to say they did so in grand style!
Even United Utilities picked up the mood of the community and moved Heaven and Earth (and a great deal of tarmac) to reinstate Whittingham Lane, albeit temporarily, so that the Procession could take place.
A glorious day, eight superb decorated floats to give the judges a real headache, a superb turnout for the fancy dress, The Bolton Caledonia Pipe Band, The Longridge Band, The Eclipse Parade Band, BwD Big Band – all combined to set the scene for the crowning of new Festival Queen Miss Roisin Quigg by retiring Queen Miss Melissa Crawley.
In her speech Melissa spoke of the highlights of her reign and in return Roisin expressed her excitement as her year in office begins. She was to begin her duties the very next day when she and her Senior Princesses attended the Bushell House Founder’s Day celebrations and received a special memento of her crowning.
The Queens were then introduced to Junior Special Guest Miss Heather Birkby, the current RHS Young School Gardener of the Year. MC Mike Barnes paid tribute to this amazing achievement from a most unassuming but gifted young member of our community. Heather had prepared, in collaboration with the grow your own project at Guild Lodge, two gifts to represent her love of gardening which she presented to Roisin and Melissa.
We were delighted to have with us, representing the Johnson and Swarbrick families, Lyn Johnson and Jill Wells who had earlier judged the shops and houses entries and a vibrant Carnival themed foyer presentation at Bushell House.
Winning Shop was Goosnargh Chippy, winning House 12, The Square, Whittingham and a special First Prize went to Bushell House
Look out for all the prize cards posted around the village.
In keeping with the very high standard of all aspects of the event this year, the maypole dancers performed their flawless patterns for the Queens and other assembled guests and the Carol May Academy Dancers followed with their “Hot Honey Rag” specially chosen for the occasion and to reflect the Carnival theme.
MC Mike highlighted the achievement of The Longridge Band in being promoted to the Championship section.
As I said the floats gave Judges Phil and Joanna Marshall a real challenge and Phil stressed his congratulations to all the entrants, the decision could not have been closer!
Family and Friends
1st A Knight to Remember … Sharon Swarbrick family and Friends
2nd Goosnargh Ghostbusters … Holden/Watkinson
3rd A Great Goosnargh Menu .. Alex Johnson & Friends and yes! That’s the same Alex, Grandson of Reg, who decorated the Village Hall and managed the setting off of the Float section of the Procession!
Schools and Organisations
1st Roll Up! Roll Up to the Circus! … Goosnargh Ducklings
2nd Charlie & the Chocolate Factory .. Goosnargh Oliverson’s
3rd Star Wars .. St Francis Catholic Primary
Brazil Nuts .. Goosnargh St Mary’s MU and
The Calendar Girls 20 Years On .. Whittingham & Goosnargh WI
The Barton Grange Trophy for Best Overall Float was awarded to Goosnargh Ducklings and the Jill Thiele Trophy to Sharon Swarbrick and Friends
Well Done everyone!
Fancy Dress Judges, Ellan and Denise Loxham again praised all the entrants
1st prizes went to Ollie’s Nursery “Doctors and Nurses”, to the Marsland group “Robots” and to Oliver Porter “Tossing the Caber”
The Overall Best Fancy Dress Trophy went to Ollie’s Nursery and the Most Original Trophy to the Marsland Group Robots.
We were delighted to welcome visiting Queens from Broughton, Longridge, Barton and Grimsargh; Councillor John Collins and Mrs Joan McGinty, Mayor and Mayoress of Preston and Parish & Rotary representatives and to have John Gornall and his immaculate Penny Farthing winding his way among the crowds.
The Raffle Draw completed events on The Square and again huge thanks to Andy Thiele and his team, to all donors of prizes and everyone who bought a ticket.
Sue Brown and her team working from Polly The Vintage Caravan sold out of the ice cream, kindly donated by Crystal Hall, in record time. Thanks particularly to Procession Co-Ordinator Nik Birkby who somehow found time to transport Polly, she would otherwise have been stranded in the Ribble Valley!
Paul Cross and the Celebration Tea Team, with Dot Cross “on the door” ensured that the day was rounded off in the best possible way with the legendary Celebration Tea.
Chairman David Butters said
“It was a great day, the weather was kind to us and everyone seemed to have a good time. I would like to thank all the Committee Members, all the volunteers including the Procession Marshals, Marshals manning the Road Blocks, the Police for being so helpful, the residents of The Square and finally a special BIG Thank You to United Utilities and Kings Construction for the temporary repair of the BIG hole in Whittingham Lane especially so that the Festival could go ahead!”
Next year the Festival takes place on Saturday 3rd June
Our next fundraising event is the second Festival Celebration Ball to be held at Wyrebank, Garstang on Saturday 24th September.
Six of the twelve tables are already taken. Please contact Stephanie, Andy Thiele or Louise Chadwick to reserve your places, payment in September .
Look out for Roisin and her retinue at Longridge and Grimsargh and catch Alex Johnson performing in COPACABANA at the Charter Theatre 8th – 10th June – yes! He’s doing that as well!!