alice puppetThe New Carnival Company will be launching an exciting new outdoor arts programme in the East Wight on Saturday 28 March with a family day of fun and discovery at the Bee Fields, in Newchurch.

The launch event, entitled Alice’s Wonder Trail, is the first of a planned series of activities which will involve local people in exploring the rich landscape and heritage on their doorstep and creating new outdoor celebratory events. The New Carnival Company is partnering Down to the Coast, a Heritage Lottery funded 5 year programme in the East Wight, in delivering this activity.

Alice’s Wonder Trail will transform Martin’s Wood and the Bee Fields into a magical space with flags, soundscapes and giant models of birds and bugs that live there. Visitors will follow Alice around the Trail, growing and shrinking along the way, in a free fun and informative tour accompanied by local storyteller Sue Bailey dressed as The Mad Hatter.

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Over 100 local people have already been involved in creating the models and animations for the Trail including the Newchurch Art Club, VIVA integrated carnival club and schoolchildren at Arreton Primary School who have created two large Dung Beetles.

Alice herself will take the form of a 3 metre tall puppet, created in just one school day by Year 6 pupils at Newchurch Primary School.

Chris Slann, Director of the New Carnival Company said:

“So many people have come forward from the local community to help support this event. We are especially grateful to the Newchurch Parish Sports and Community Association and to the Hampshire and IW Wildlife Trust for their support in accessing the site and allowing us to explore the natural environment creatively. We hope lots of people will come along on the day and find out more about Martins Wood and the Bee Fields”.

Alice’s Wonder Trail opens at 12 noon with free guided tours at 12:30, 13:15 and 15:00. Other activities include Easter Bonnet making, a Circus skills workshop, Face painting and Bug hovering, with entertainments from Moonshine Morris dancers, Newchurch School Choir and Dance Group and Newchurch Drama Group.

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The Newchurch Bee Fields are located to the east of High Street, Newchurch, pedestrian access from the car park at School Lane PO36 0NN.

The event also marks the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice in Wonderland’.

For more info: Contact Chris Slann, The New Carnival Company CIC on 01983 716095. Email [email protected]

Photographed: Frankie Goldspink (front left) and Gina Dyer (front right) from the New Carnival Company with pupils from Newchurch Primary School and their giant Alice puppet

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