When news happens get involved. Send your pictures, views and video to us by text and email
New hope for Weymouth Carnival as businesses rally to help
10:00am Saturday 2nd March 2013 in Local News
THERE’S new hope for Weymouth Carnival after businesses rallied to help the organisers.
Interest has been stirred among firms after the Echo broke the story about the new-look committee facing a funding crisis.
Weymouth Sea Life Park and Tower is the first to come forward to kick-start a campaign with a £1,000 donation.
Sea Life general manager Craig Dunkerley said if 10 businesses gave £1,000 it would help the committee on its way.
New people have volunteered to take over the carnival after local Rotary clubs, which came to the rescue of the event in 2010, stepped down after three years of organising duties.
The Weymouth Carnival and Events Club, led by Ryan Hope, is finding that without a big umbrella organisation to back it like Rotary there are additional pressures when starting from scratch such as securing insurance cover for the motorised procession.
The club set itself a target of raising £10,000 in sponsorship over the next month to get things off the ground, but warned it would pull the plug if the support wasn’t there from local businesses.
Mr Hope said he was delighted with the response received so far, which includes Sea Life’s generous donation, £500 from Moby Dick’s plus other pledges. He urged other local firms to get involved.
Sponsorship co-ordinator Diane Moore is in the process of contacting a further 50 businesses.
Mr Hope said the committee aimed to raise half the costs of the carnival through sponsorship – about £30,000. This would help to pay for big events like the Red Arrows – the committee will know in the next fortnight if they have a display – and ensure a worthy amount is raised for local charities.
Mr Hope said: “There have been some comments about why we have left it so late to get sponsorship and the fact is we had to form a new committee and it takes time to research how much it all costs and put together the sponsorship packages before we go out and ask for money.
“We’ve had to start with a blank sheet and that takes time. We’re all volunteers with other jobs.”
Mr Hope added: “We’re extremely grateful to the businesses which have come forward so far and we hope others will be as generous.
“We’re more confident about this year’s carnival. The aim is to raise money for local charities while putting on a great day for the town which will undoubtedly be good for trade and tourism.”
Weymouth Carnival is due to take place on Wednesday, August 21.
Weymouth Carnival and Events Club has produced sponsorship packages for businesses starting from £100 and going up to big sums for events including the Red Arrows (£10,000), grand draw (£8,000) and the firework display (£5,000).
If you are interested in any of the packages, or just want to make a donation contact sponsorship coordinator Diane Moore by email at weymouthcarnival firstname.lastname@example.org People interested in supporting this year’s carnival can also contact Ryan Hope on 07795 246080 or email ryanhope1991@ googlemail.com