Resort carnival flop

ANGRY and disappointed revellers and householders today sent a barrage of complaints to Felixstowe's carnival organisers – with people unhappy at the noise, fireworks and procession.

ANGRY and disappointed revellers and householders today sent a barrage of complaints to Felixstowe's carnival organisers – with people unhappy at the noise, fireworks and procession.

After what most observers felt was a superb weekend and one of the best carnivals ever, it became clear that not everyone enjoyed it all.

But organisers have been quick to respond – and say they will be addressing the issues and making changes for next year.

More than 20,000 watched the big parade on its hour-long journey through the town, but some of those waiting didn't get to see it.


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It had been expected the cavalcade would go along Langer Road, but organisers decided to take out the queen and winning floats at the bus station for the awards ceremony – leaving people after that point with little to see.

"It was very disappointing. We were waiting by Arwela Road and by the time it reached us there was virtually nothing left and huge gaps between – people were very disgruntled and just walked off," said Susan Cuthbert, of Trimley St Mary.

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Problems then occurred with the fireworks, launched from Langer Primary's grounds – but people who had paid to stand in the park and watch could not see them because of a row of fir trees.

One man who contacted the Evening Star's web site forum branded them "pathetic and a total swizz".

Residents in Langer Road said the three days were "absolute misery" because of the noise of the bands, public address system and funfair.

Residents and councillor Dot Paddick said 50 residents had complained to her.

"I could not hear myself speak in my flat and the only way I could watch TV was to go to bed and put earphones on. It was stifling hot and we could not open any windows because of the dreadful noise," she said.

Carnival secretary Richard Stewart admitted organisers had made mistakes with the fireworks and procession and promised these would be examined in detail and changes made to ensure it did not happen again next year.

"It was a big shame because the rest of the weekend went very well and we had big crowds and people really seemed to enjoy everything, with great support for the events in the park and on the seafront," he said.

"It has to be remembered that this was the first time as a committee we have used Langer Park and it is a big learning curve for us.

"We are only a very small committee and we were trying to juggle a lot of items – we will learn from what happened this year, sit down and look at all the complaints and points made, and try to put it right for next time."

The fireworks could not be fired from the park because the risk assessment suggested it would not be safe as there were accidents at fireworks shows in the 1970s and 80s. The firework company will look at other possible sites for 2004.

n What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

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