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Diss Carnival brings back King and Queen tradition

PUBLISHED: 14:53 26 April 2019 | UPDATED: 08:23 29 April 2019

The King and Queen will head the Diss Carnival parade this summer after the revival of the tradition. Picture: Denise Bradley

The King and Queen will head the Diss Carnival parade this summer after the revival of the tradition. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant

The tradition of the Carnival 'Royalty' is set to be revived in Diss this summer with a unique twist to those chosen as the King and Queen.

The De Lucy House Care Home team taking part in Diss Carnival parade last year. The Carnival King and Queen this year will be residents from the home. Picture: Denise BradleyThe De Lucy House Care Home team taking part in Diss Carnival parade last year. The Carnival King and Queen this year will be residents from the home. Picture: Denise Bradley

One of the biggest days in the town's calendar, which draws crowds of thousands to line the streets, the carnival has been without its regal honours in recent years.

But after calls for the return of the traditional King and Queen the honorary appointments will be reinstated at this year's event with those crowned chosen at De Lucy House Care Home.

The King and Queen has a long history at Diss Carnival. The Norwich Union coach and four grey horses transported the Carnival Queen at the head of the procession in 1988. Picture: Archant LibraryThe King and Queen has a long history at Diss Carnival. The Norwich Union coach and four grey horses transported the Carnival Queen at the head of the procession in 1988. Picture: Archant Library

Elderly residents at the home on Victoria Road will select their Royal couple and their deputies will be chauffeured in a luxury limousine at the front of the parade when Diss Carnival with a pun-laden re-historic theme — Pre-Diss-Toric — takes place on Sunday, June 9.

Claire Keen, of Diss Carnival committee, said: “We haven't had any Carnival 'Royalty' since the new committee took over in 2017. I understand that the previous committee had struggled finding people willing to put their names forward, of which the committee would then interview and make a selection, so it was decided by us to drop it. However, acting upon feedback from the town that some people missed the Carnival King and Queen, we have decided to revive it.”

Diss Carnival Queen Alice Cater in 2013. The ceremonial role has not taken place for the last few years. Picture: Denise BradleyDiss Carnival Queen Alice Cater in 2013. The ceremonial role has not taken place for the last few years. Picture: Denise Bradley

The decision to team-up with De Lucy House, part of award-winning care charity Greensleeves, came after staff and residents took part in last year's parade.

“We had lovely feedback from them, and others, about how much they had enjoyed their day out, so we decided to get them more involved this year, and have asked them to provide this year's King and Queen. There will also be a deputy King and Queen in attendance,” said Ms Keen.

Diss Carnival brings out the crowds. This year's event on June 9 will have a prehistoric and dinosaur theme. Picture: Denise BradleyDiss Carnival brings out the crowds. This year's event on June 9 will have a prehistoric and dinosaur theme. Picture: Denise Bradley

To make the King and Queen's 'reign' extra special they will also enjoy a pre-Carnival Afternoon Tea at Katie's Kitchen and a 'pamper' session courtesy of Joanne Hearle of Bressingham Beauty Salon.

Karen Lynch, activities manager at De Lucy House, said: “We are delighted to be involved. We will be holding a special afternoon tea to celebrate the residents who are chosen as the King and Queen and their courtiers.

Diss Carnival Queen Lucy Davies and Carnival King Oliver Pilsbury-Gaunt in 2012. The roles are being revived for 2019. Picture: Simon ParkerDiss Carnival Queen Lucy Davies and Carnival King Oliver Pilsbury-Gaunt in 2012. The roles are being revived for 2019. Picture: Simon Parker

“Last year we wheeled residents around with the procession and they had a whale of time. This year we have about 20 residents who would like to go. We will all be dressed up too.”

• Find out more details about Diss Carnival 2019

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