Could this be the best float in this year’s Lord Mayor’s Parade?

Pupils at Wensum Junior School preparing for the Lord Mayors procession. Picture: Jamie Honeywood

Pupils at Wensum Junior School preparing for the Lord Mayors procession. Picture: Jamie Honeywood - Credit: Archant

When it comes to carnivals, there are floats – and there are floats.

Pupils at Wensum Junior School preparing for the Lord Mayors procession. Picture: Jamie Honeywood

Pupils at Wensum Junior School preparing for the Lord Mayors procession. Picture: Jamie Honeywood - Credit: Archant

While some are thrown together at the last minute, comprising a few people in grass skirts on a flat-bed lorry, one Norwich school is doing different.

All of the pupils at Wensum Junior on Turner Road have spent months planning and putting together their float for the Lord Mayor's parade.

Samba drummers, hand-made puppets and colourful dance routines will be among the features of the float, which the school is using to make a statement about the future of our planet.

A steering committee of pupils from across teaching years has been leading the project to create the eco-friendly float.

Pupils at Wensum Junior School preparing for the Lord Mayors procession. Picture: Jamie Honeywood

Pupils at Wensum Junior School preparing for the Lord Mayors procession. Picture: Jamie Honeywood - Credit: Archant


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Head teacher Victoria McConnell said this year's theme 'love the world around you' had struck a chord with the pupils, aged seven to 11, and that the new ban on lorry floats had encouraged them to think creatively about their entry.

She said: "We have a school full of incredibly globally-sensitive children who understand the need to act now to save the planet. The changes to the procession have been met with backlash because people struggle with change but for us it has been an opportunity to show the young people of Norwich we are listening."

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The school has picked oceans as its theme and has set aside time each week for students to work on their chosen contribution.

In line with the environmental theme, pupils have delved into the world of pre-vehicle parades, drawing inspiration from traditional carnivals from across the world. Local artists have visited the school to help design the entry and Mrs McConnell said the experience had been an opportunity for the students to explore their own interests.

Pupils at Wensum Junior School preparing for the Lord Mayors procession. Picture: Jamie Honeywood

Pupils at Wensum Junior School preparing for the Lord Mayors procession. Picture: Jamie Honeywood - Credit: Archant

She said: "We wanted to let every child decide what they were working on, so the groups have students of all ages in them. The result is a celebration of Wensum pupils, parents and the school. The children have really embraced it."

The Lord Mayor's Celebration will run from Friday, July 5 until Sunday, July 7 with entertainment across Norwich, including the parade on Saturday evening.

As well as floats and performances from hundreds of entries, life-size elephant puppets will join the procession on its journey from St Stephens Road to Palace Street.

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