Bringing back Blyth Carnival

One of the Blyth Community Carnival Club workshops.
One of the Blyth Community Carnival Club workshops.

Headway Arts is working with the town council to bring back the Blyth Community Carnival this summer.

Headway Arts aims to involve local people and community groups in bringing back the Blyth Carnival, drawing inspiration from the old-time carnivals, circus, international and vintage entertainments from Blyth's unique history.

At noon on Saturday, August 26, there will be a Community Carnival Parade leaving Headway ArtSpace on Waterloo Road to Blyth Market Place where there will be street performances until 5pm.

Headway Arts has programmed quality acts from regional artists, including family favourites, Bell and Bullock Circus Theatre, international music from Soznac, escapologist Chris Cross, Timestep Dance, while local guitar hero Anth Purdy, fresh from wowing the crowds in London, will be playing his swing guitar.

To dance out the afternoon, there will be a Lindy Hop swing=dance flashmob open to all who'd like to join in. Talented local buskers will also be the bill. Also look out for the up-close street magic and pop-up performances around the town centre.

Creative director, Allie Walton-Robson, said: "Our cultural programme and fringe festival were amazingly popular during the Tall Ships Regatta when Blyth showed the world what's great about it. Following that is a tough one, this a community-led event so we need the people of Blyth to get behind us to help to make it happen.

"Thanks to the support of Blyth Town Council, we've been able to offer free family workshops over the summer holidays and a great programme on the day. Our carnival club have taken inspiration from wonderful vintage entertainments, including Stan Laurel, The Old Theatre Royal with funny circus acts, such as a troupe of monkeys, clever ponies and the famous Roxy Ballroom."

Coun Kath Nisbet said: "After visiting Stockton Carnival, I was very inspired to help bring back the Blyth Community Carnival so I am totally behind this great initiative from local charity Headway Arts working with Blyth Town Council."

Carnival Club workshops are taking place at Headway ArtSpace throughout the whole of August for people to make a costume and join the parade. They are Monday to Friday, 11am to 12.30pm and 1.30pm to 3.30pm. They are are free and open to all, but places are limited so book on 01670 351962 or email
Organisers are also asking if businesses can offer some support or sponsorship, dress their windows with a circus or theatrical theme, enter a float into the parade or make a donation. Community centres and groups are also being challenged to build a float and walk in the parade, while performers, groups and artists are being asked if they want to join the parade and perform on the community stage.