Thousands raised in appeal for Whitley Bay Carnival

Volunteers who have given up their time to make carnival costumes and structures.
Volunteers who have given up their time to make carnival costumes and structures.

Organisers of the Whitley Bay Town Carnival are closing in on their fund-raising target.

Supporters have donated thousands of pounds since the carnival appeal was launched last month.

And now thanks to the generosity of local residents and businesses, they are now £2,000 short of their target.

The additional money would allow more local schools, who are eager to take part in the carnival, to be involved in this year’s event, providing them with the resources and the expertise to make their carnival costumes and structures and get ready for the parade.

It would also enable the professional street acts to perform additional shows throughout the day to ensure carnival day is a day for the whole community to enjoy.

The carnival – supported by Whitley Bay Big Local – will take place on Friday, May 26, with a parade through the town and showcase at Spanish City on Saturday, May 27.

Carnival producer Carol Alevroyianni said: “The support we have already received has been nothing short of amazing and just goes to show how much people love the carnival; there are simply too many people and organisations who are helping to make this happen to mention them all, but their offers of support, free use of facilities and their financial contributions have made a significant difference to what we are able to achieve.”

Anyone interested in making a donation to the appeal can do so at www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/whitleybay-carnival or contact calevroyianni@aol.com

Whilst some residents and businesses have donated directly to the online fund-raising campaign, many businesses have donated money directly to the carnival fund.

However a huge number have donated in kind, saving the organisers thousands of pounds which have in turn been used to host workshops, create costumes and secure performers.

One such company is Big Purple Box, a Whitley Bay based web design business which has not only built a dedicated carnival website – www.whitleybaycarnival.co.uk – but has agreed to maintain it, adding up to date news and information and providing a portal for people to buy tickets for the carnival ball.

Big Purple Box creative director John Peace said: “I believe it’s important for people gaining a sense of ‘belonging’ that events such as the carnival happen within Whitley Bay.

“Participating in events like this brings schools, communities and the people who live in the town together in a show of pride for their town and community.”

And Big Purple Box is far from alone, as more and more organisations throw their weight behind the carnival, offering their professional help and support.

The House of Objects have hosted five weeks of workshops free of charge to help members of the community make plastic flowers to adorn the carnival ball; 42nd Street has offered up free rehearsal space for the carnival drummers; and the Whitley Bay Boys Club has donated £200 from its own fundraising efforts to add to the target.