Over the past few years, under the chairmanship of Gary Nunn, Wilton Carnival has grown from a few stalls to a large family event, right in the centre of Wilton. It is well thought of and well supported by the people of Wilton and surrounding area and attracts several thousand people each year.
The Carnival starts with a daylight procession through the Town, usually a warm sunny day, with plenty of colourful themed floats, walkers, marching bands and Wilton’s Mayor and Councillors. Other Mayors from Wiltshire are also invited which gives the procession a good figurehead. The town is overflowing with spectators who follow the procession for the Carnival fun afternoon.
Wilton is lucky enough to have a large recreation field right in the middle of town and this has been the home of Wilton Carnival for many years since it began in 1949. In its new form, Wilton Carnival was held in this field from 2006 – 2012, after which time, due to the field being reseeded, it moved to its present home of Wilton Shopping Village. There have been many changes since the carnival started and its latest incarnation in 2006, when it was renamed “Wilton Community Carnival” has proved very popular with everyone and is now the biggest event in the Wilton calendar. The Carnival is packed with home grown children’s activities and local talent, music tent, classic vehicles, bands, bar and Scouts BBQ and it really does involve all aspects of the local community. Among the many attractions are the stalls from local charities and organisations, providing them with an excellent platform to promote themselves and to raise funds.
The committee insists that the event remains free to the public as this is one of the most popular attractions, but achieving this gets harder each year as the costs of staging an event like this continually increases. However, a great deal of goodwill has been generated over the years and generous sponsorship from local businesses has helped to keep the Carnival alive each year.