September 20 2014 Latest news:
Donna-Louise Bishop, Reporter
Saturday, July 5, 2014
As the final preparations and finishing touches are put to the Lord Mayor’s Celebrations it is time to get your party hat on and enjoy all that the weekend has to offer.
The event, which echoes the sights and sounds of carnival, takes a whole year to organise with plenty of people power bringing together 60 plus floats, outlandishly costumed party-goers, wacky street entertainment and thousands of revellers.
But behind all that colour and fun there is a team of hard working individuals who help to bring the celebrations to life.
It is the oldest Lord Mayor’s procession outside of London and we take a look at some of the people working behind the scenes.
Clare Hubery, Norwich City Council’s culture and events officer, researches new acts for street entertainment while working in partnership with local organisations. She also co-ordinates the programme and managing of the events on the day.
Involved with the celebration for the last five years, she said: “We start planning the next Lord Mayors Celebration as soon as the last one has finished and we spend a lot of time thinking about how we can improve the event and researching and developing new elements.
“The celebration has a long history in Norwich and is an important feature of the city’s calendar. It is an opportunity for the whole community to come together, showcase what we can do, share some new experiences and remember why it’s so good to live in Norwich.
“I love the atmosphere in the city on Saturday evening – there is something unexpected around every corner. The stages will be in full swing and the whole evening culminates in an amazing firework display from Norwich Castle.
“Dream Engine in Chapelfield Gardens will be amazing and I’m really looking forward to seeing the Dick Danger Show on St Peters Street. There are amazing things on everywhere and there are some great acts lined up on the Forum Stage and DJs in Chapelfield Gardens.
“The celebrations continue on Sunday and there are some fantastic events taking place including the Norwich Lanes Summer Fayre, the Walk Stage and lots of activities for families and children.”
Lewis Cook, is also a culture and events officer at Norwich City Council, and manages Chapelfield Gardens during the event.
Involved with the celebration for the last five years, he said: “I have to work out the requirements for all services, go out for quotes, choose the best value and contract each company.
“I have to recruit more than 80 staff to work on the day by getting applications, talking to each one about the role and contracting or organising payment for them. I also help design the layout of Chapelfield Gardens with the team and decide where all elements of the event will be positioned.
“This celebration brings the whole city together in a big celebration for everyone. It’s free to come along and enjoy so it’s a great chance for families and groups of friends to have a fun day out with thousands of other people.
“My favourite part of the weekend is having 3,000 people all dancing to the music in Chapelfield Gardens in the evening. There’s a large funfair, lots of DJs and BBC Voices – local up and coming bands. The city is so full that there really is something for everyone.”
Liz Howard, is also a culture and events officer at Norwich City Council, and assists in co-ordinating, programming and managing the event.
Involved with the celebration for the last five years, she said: “My role varies from programming entertainment through to managing budgets and co-ordinating logistics.
“The Lord Mayors Celebration is a key date in the events calendar. It is a community festival with lots of organisations bringing activities to the programme. We try to keep the line-up relevant, engaging and inspiring and so that it appeals to a broad audience both locally and for visitors.
“My favourite part of the weekend is the fireworks on the Saturday night. They are always amazing and it’s a nice way to finish our busiest day.
“There is so much going on from street entertainment, stages in the city, DJ’s in Chapelfield Gardens, a procession through the streets and much much more. Its hard to pin point one element but there is something for everyone so people should see as much as they can.”
Joe A’Court, Norwich City Council’s culture and events assistant, is the procession manager and deals with all float applications while managing the procession staff on the day.
Involved with the celebration for the last three years, he said: “The Lord’s Mayors Celebration is a celebratory occasion that brings communities together.
“My favourite part of the weekend is the fireworks from the castle.
“I would recommend that people go to the Disco Shed in Chapelfield Gardens.”