A piece of carnival history could be lost as Wills Carnival Club in jeopardy

A piece of carnival history could be lost as Wills Carnival Club in jeopardy

A piece of carnival history could be lost as Wills Carnival Club in jeopardy

First published in News

A PIECE of carnival history could be lost if a long-established club can’t find a place to build its cart for the 2015 procession.

Wills Carnival Club in Bridgwater was formed 63 years ago and has produced many award-winning carts over the years, but now there’s a risk that it might be forced to fold if it fails to find a permanent home to build its cart as well as attract new members.

Paul Barker, chairman, said: “We’ve built some county cup-winning carts over the years, but the problem is we haven’t got a permanent home to build our cart.

“Memberships are dwindling because nobody wants to join a club with no home.

“If we don’t get a new place Bridgwater could lose a long-established club and it would lose part of Carnival history.”

The club managed to find a temporary home in East Huntspill after a plea in the Mercury last year, but the contract was only for two years.

Scott Gibbs, 20, of Wills CC, said: “The carnival club is one of the most successful in Bridgwater.

“It has put out some of the most innovative carts that revitalised the carnival.

“We were one of the first to have a two-storey cart when we did Phantom of the Opera in around 1989.”

Wills CC is a tableau club whose members pose theatrically on the cart rather than moving or speaking, but its numbers are dwindling.

Mr Gibbs said: “We went from 50 members to only five active paying members.

“We had to turn people down in the past to go on the carts and now the chairman has to beg people to get on the carts.”

The club is looking for about an acre of land to rent on a permanent basis where members can build their cart and keep their equipment.

If you have land to rent or are interested in joining Wills CC, call Scott Gibbs on 07531-432782.

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