Derby Caribbean Carnival is organised by Derby West Indian Community Association and is the highlight of the West Indian community summer, taking place over two weekend days in July.
The carnival procession takes place through the city streets on Saturday, when there is also a programme of events in Market Square, and events such as a stage show with internationally acclaimed artists, fun fair, beer tent, sound systems, arts and craft stalls, and food stalls (selling Caribbean as well as European foods) are held at Osmaston Park on Sunday.
Over 25,000 local people enjoy and take part in Derby Caribbean Carnival which has an amazing impact on participants and audiences alike:
“To get picked as Carnival Queen has been a dream come true. The carnival is on the day of my birthday! I want to be a role model for my twins” Samantha Glasgow, Derby Carnival Queen 2011
“Loved the event and the high spirits….even in the rain” John Brayshaw, local resident
The Derby Caribbean Carnival is an annual event planned and organised by the Derby West Indian Community Association, DWICA (in association with other community groups and partners). It started as a small festival at Moorways Sports Centre in 1975 where members of the community came together to organise activities for fundraising.
From 1986, with the employment of a worker for Caribbean Focus, the carnival became a much bigger venture, attracting regional and national interest. Originally the carnival was held over one day on a Saturday, but in 1998 a new two day approach was adopted with the carnival procession taking place on Saturday and events, such as stage show with internationally acclaimed artists, fun fair, beer tent, sound systems, arts and craft stalls, food stalls (selling Caribbean as well as European foods) being held at Osmaston Park on Sunday. This was successful and since then the carnival has been held over a two day period.
Over the years much of the funding for carnival has been provided by DWICA itself, but with important additional support from Arts Council England and Derby City Council. Carnival has also been supported by Derbyshire Building Society, Rolls Royce, Western Union and Midland Mainline to name just a few sponsoring organizations.
During the carnival period DWICA can attract as many as150 volunteers to help with carnival organisation, carnival workshops, carnival Queen Show, marshalling and publicity. Without this huge volunteer effort carnival would not be possible.
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