BETWEEN 4,000 and 5,000 people packed Ashington for the village’s annual festival.
The festival featured musical performances from a range of groups and solo acts, including 2008 X-factor finalist Laura White and a Freddie Mercury tribute act, before a spectacular fireworks display crowned the day’s entertainments.
Along with the musical stars, the “old favourites” returned to the festival, including the Harris Brothers’ Funfair, a “fun dog show” sponsored by Arun Veterinary Group, as well as a flower show and craft and charity stalls.
Margaret Alford, chairman of the Ashington Festival Committee, said: “It was a fantastic time. The weather was glorious and there was so many people there. It was absolutely brilliant.”
Earlier in the day it was the carnival procession that took centre stage, with soldiers, Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory and Wallace and Gromit among the star attractions.
Chanctonbury Playgroup won the best float for Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, with Ashington Church coming second and Ashington Scouts third. Best walking group was won by the Newland family, dressed as Wallace and Gromit, with Toby’s Toylander second and Blooming Gorgeous third.
The 2012 carnival princess was Sarah Shaw, 10, and her two attendants were Scarlet Marshall, six, and Patience Sigston, 11, with Sam Holden, six, Lewis Thomas, eight, and Matthew Wieland, five, the pageboys.
Further entertainment was provided by an array of sideshows and classic and vintage vehicles, while hungry visitors had a wide choice of culinary treats to choose from, including Thai food, stone-baked pizzas, jacket potatoes, crêpes, burgers, and ice cream, among other things.
Margaret added: “The festival committee would like to thank everyone from the sponsors to the helpers we had to make it such a fantastic day, and we look forward to seeing everyone next year on August 17.”