Village carnival has medieval theme

HUNDREDS of people turned out to see one of Suffolk's best-loved villages transformed into a medieval wonderland.

Laurence Cawley

HUNDREDS of people turned out to see one of Suffolk's best-loved villages transformed into a medieval wonderland.

Yesterday's Lavenham Carnival marked the culmination of a weekend of activities which included a quiz night in the village hall, a barn dance beneath a marquee and singing with the Salvation Army Band.

For the carnival itself, those gathered in the timber-framed centre of Lavenham were taken back in time to the 15th Century.

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During the parade, which set off from Market Square at noon in the direction of the carnival ground, knights, jesters and other medieval characters walked the streets. They were cheered on by those standing at the roadside, many of whom were dressed in period costume.

The event was hailed a success by Martin Weaver, chairman of Lavenham Community Council, which runs the carnival.

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“The weather certainly helped make it for us,” he said. “There has been a good turnout and a lot of children dressed up in period costume.

“We arranged prizes for the best costumes but this year we had to award three first prizes because we just could not split them.

“It has been a really good few days.”

The medieval theme was chosen this year by organisers in recognition of the village's illustrious past.

During the medieval period, Lavenham was ranked amongst the 20 wealthiest settlements in England on the back of its wool trade during the 15th and 16th Century.

The importance of Lavenham's wool industry is preserved to this day in the form of The Guildhall of the 16th Century wool guild of Corpus Christi, which stands in the centre of the village overlooking the market square.

As well as the carnival parade, residents and visitors took in the sights and sounds of the rare breeds and motor show at the cricket ground. Hundreds of vintage, rare and unusual vehicles were put on display.

Cashed raised during the carnival will go towards supporting the village hall.

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