A bit of history..
Wells Carnival is a not-for-profit organisation run by a team of hardworking volunteers who live in or near the town of Wells-next-the-Sea on the beautiful North Norfolk coast. The event has been taking place annually at the beginning of August for over 50 years. In fact we are reliably informed that the Carnival, but admittedly not as we know it, since it was only one day or weekend, started in the late 1800's. Over the years the event has grown and the carnival committee ‘Crew’ (they wear the fuchsia pink T.shirts) now organise more than 90 events over the 10 days of Carnival.
We endeavour to provide entertainment for all ages from teddy bears picnics for the little ones, costume making workshops, raft race, history walks plus live music over 6 nights and the ever popular Screen on the Green. The event culminates on the 2nd Saturday with the main Carnival event, including fancy dress competitions, a parade around the town and a spectacular music event in the evening.
Official dates are Friday 29th July to Sunday 7th August (incl)
Carnival Day itself, along with the Carnival Parade, traditionally takes place on the 2nd Saturday of Carnival week - therefore in 2016, it will be on Saturday 6th August
Carnival 2016 begins in :-
Subject to circumstances beyond our control Wells Carnival will take place:
2017 DATES: Friday 28th July to Sunday 6th August (incl)
A full programme of events is available to view on our About Carnival page approx 4 weeks prior to the Carnival Week – but it is worth checking regularly as information is added on a weekly basis, as and when events are confirmed
During the parade, on Carnival Day itself, there is a bucket collection (authorised buckets are clearly marked). This money is divided among local charities and organisations at our AGM held in October.
Dressing up is 100% encouraged – in fact the more outrageous and flamboyant the better. We have themes running throughout the week so check the programme of events for more information.
In 2009 the Wells Carnival ‘Crew’ took over the organisation and running of the annual Wells ChristmasTide event. The committee have run the event for the past 5 years but in 2014 took the difficult decision to ‘hand over the reins’. Wells Carnival is now a 10 day event and the volunteer committee have found it increasingly difficult to ‘juggle’ the 2 events.
From 2015 Wells ChristmasTide will be run and co-ordinated by the Wells Lighting Committee & The Wells Harbour Office. The Carnival committee have agreed to fund the cost of the fireworks for 2015 & 2016. For more information and photographs from last years event visit the website
Wells Carnival photos are taken by our lovely resident photographer Cy – you can’t miss him – he is the ‘Yeti with a camera’ (his words not ours), ‘but fret ye not,’ he doesn’t bite!!! Cy attends just about all our events, snapping away. He then pops home, loads all the photos on the website and sends the information to our local chemist (David Jagger Ltd). These photos can then be purchased by calling into the chemist or can be ordered by post through Cy’s website. To view photos and further information on ordering click here:
Calling all local historians/detectives – we have been contacted on behalf of an elderly lady who lives in Monroe, Louisiana.
The lady is 90 years old and was one of the original ‘GI’ brides. She left England around 1949 to live in the USA, and all she took with her was one suitcase, which included a cup (see pictures).
The silver-plated cup was purchased in Dymchurch, Kent in 1949 by a relative and is inscribed “Won at the Wells Regatta", it has 3 initials on it which may be ‘JKW’ but because of the style it is not clear. Also on the bottom it is inscribed 'Aug 10th 1877'.
Unfortunately none of the Wells sailing club records or Wells Carnival (previously known as Wells Regatta) records go back that far so if anyone can shed any light on the trophy or had a distant relative from the Wells area with the initials JKW (or similar) who may have won at Wells Regatta in 1877 please get in touch
A major part of the Carnival’s success is the unstinting and continued support of not only the Wells people and businesses, but also from our visitors from further afield.
To make a success of Carnival requires extensive sponsorship and fund raising so that as many people as possible are catered for and to ensure that we offer a great week’s entertainment. We would like to ask that everyone considers sponsoring, even if it’s just a small part of the week long event.
We are finding it more expensive than ever to put on a good show and we hope that everyone who takes advantage of the free events on offer will pop a few pounds in the collection buckets to ensure we can repeat the event in the years to come. The committee are all volunteers, don’t receive a penny for the 1000’s of hours spent organising and running Wells Carnival but can only carry on if you ALL support our efforts.
Make a donation on-line using PayPal or your credit/debit card by clicking the button below.
Alternatively, you can send us a cheque made out to: Wells Carnival Ltd and send c/o 46 Waveney Close, Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk, NR23 1HT
Wells Carnival have on offer Wells-next-the-Sea car stickers. These will be on sale during Carnival week, from our merchandise stall, with all proceeds going directly towards funding the event.
If you can’t wait ‘till then just send us a cheque (payable to Wells Carnival Ltd.) for £1.50 per sticker plus a S.A.E. to:
Wells Carnival Car Sticker,
c/o 46, Waveney Close,
Wells-next-the-Sea, NR23 1HT
(please make sure you enclose a stamped, addressed envelope plus a note indicating which sticker you would like – ‘crabs’ or ‘love’).
Alternatively make a donation (click on red button on the right) for a minimum of £2.50 (to incl. P & P) and we will pop in the post to you. Additional stickers £1.50 each.
Don't forget to state which sticker you would like - if you forget just email through a message to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The majority of events throughout the 10 days are either free or of minimal charge to offset some of the costs.
The ‘Crew’ relies on sponsorship, advertising and bucket collections throughout the week to cover the cost of putting on all the events – so if you come along to join in the fun please make sure you put a few quid in the collection buckets. If you can’t find a bucket you can always leave a donation at the Wells Carnival merchandise tent. or you can donate using your credit or Debit card securely using the Paypal Payments gateway.