Carnivals up and down the country are working together to bring a celebration full of camaraderie, vibrancy and exuberance, to every child and young person this summer – including those on the Isle of Wight.

The new National Children’s Carnival Week, 12 – 18 July 2021, is the brainchild of the UK Centre for Carnival Arts based in Luton and aims to get schoolteachers, children and their families everywhere involved in a remarkable upbeat finale to what has been such a challenging academic year.

The idea has proven so popular that carnival partners on the Isle of Wight – along with others in London, Bridgwater, Bristol, Norwich, Northampton, Luton, Manchester, Leeds and Derby – have pledged specialist support, artist time and resources to the project, which will go ‘live’ on Thursday 22 April.

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The programme will provide online teaching resources and ‘make carnival at home’ videos that can be shared and delivered in all kinds of settings, in and out of school, for everyone to get involved. During National Children’s Carnival Week in July, there will be mini carnivals ‘popping up’ all over the place, in the safety of school playgrounds, on sports fields and in secure outdoor community spaces.

Over the last 13 months, carnival parades, outdoor arts and events have been severely hit by the pandemic. With cancellations being announced once again, the professional carnival sector felt the need to act.

All partners’ own events have been badly affected, which has impacted the thousands of children and young people who take part each year, making costumes and choreography at school or at clubs and presenting them ‘live’ on the streets.

Frankie Goldspink, Creative Director of the New Carnival Company based on the Isle of Wight said:

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“We usually run a children’s parade during the summer term and have heard from many teachers how disappointed they are not to be taking part for the second year running. We have joined the National Children’s Carnival Week programme and are encouraging all Island schools to take part.

“So far, we have received enquiries from over 25 groups and 18 have confirmed their involvement.”

Schools and groups are being asked to record their projects and their own carnival celebrations and share them on the national page.

On Thursday 22 April at 1.30pm a nation-wide Launch event – with Pop-up mini carnival presentations (Covid- secure) taking place all over the country on that day. The Isle of Wight’s is taking place at Brading Roman Villa.

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