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Carnival of the Baubles is back!

Published: 23/02/2023
Carnival of the Baubles 2022, Saturday 26 November, Save the Date

The countdown to Christmas begins this November as we welcome back Carnival of the Baubles to light up Ashford town centre.

Loveashford are delighted to be working in partnership with Emergency Exit Arts, Made in Ashford and a host of talented local artists to bring this spectacular light procession to our high street on Saturday 26 November.  

Come along and watch the procession of giant illuminated lanterns and baubles, which are decorated by Ashford based schools and community groups, as it makes its way from Elwick Place, up Bank Street and through the Lower High Street where it will end with a festive finale!  This year’s parade is themed around Outer Space and will host a special appearance from Emergency Exit Art’s BinBot – a giant mechanical puppet that will lead the procession full of glitter and light through the town.  

There will also be an incredible video mapping projection (created by University of Kent students) illuminating the Mecca Bingo building and architectural lighting will light up St Mary’s Church, creating a beautiful festive glow into the evening.

On the day, there will be live music on the bandstand thanks to Revelation Ashford and performances from TheatreTrain Ashford before the procession starts. Park Mall’s Makers Market will also feature unique Christmas gift and many local businesses will be offering festive food and drinks. Plus there's FREE parking from 3pm at Elwick Place and Victoria Road car parks. 

Cllr Nathan Iliffe, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration and Economic Development at Ashford Borough Council said: “I am delighted that Carnival of the Baubles is back this year. This event encapsulates community spirit and seeing our residents come together in the parade is one of my yearly highlights. I am looking forward to this year’s parade and hope Ashford residents take the opportunity to join in.

So do save the date in your diary for this fabulous, festive event!

Want to get involved in the event? You can make your own beautiful Christmas lantern to use in the procession through the town, or to take home and hang in your window. The family-friendly workshops will take place in The Craftship (opposite Made in Ashford in Park Mall).    

Book your workshop via Made in Ashford’s websiteWorkshops – Made in Ashford 

  • Saturday 29 October, 11.30am, 12.00pm -1.30pm, 2pm – 3.30pm
  • Saturday 5 November, 10.00am – 11.30am, 12.00pm -1.30pm, 2pm – 3.30pm  
  • Saturday 12 November, 10.00am – 11.30am, 12.00pm -1.30pm, 2pm – 3.30pm   
  • Saturday 26November, 10.00am – 11.30am, 12.00pm -1.30pm, 2pm – 3.30pm 

Carnival of the Baubles Itinerary   

When: Saturday 26 November  

Where: Procession starts at Elwick Place at 5pm and ends in the Lower High Street     

Schedule of the day 

  • 10am - 6pm: Park Mall Makers Market – Christmas version!    
  • 2pm – 5pm: Live Music on the Bandstand from Revelation Ashford      
  • 10am – 3.30pm: Public lantern-making workshop at the Craftship (opposite Made in Ashford)  Booking required. 
  • 4.15pm: TheatreTrain performance at Elwick Place
  • 5pm: Procession starts from Elwick Place     
  • 6pm: Procession ends at lower High Street    
  • 5pm- 8pm: Digital video mapping finale on Mecca Bingo (lower High Street) from University of Kent students. 
  • 5pm –8pm: Architectural lighting on the exterior of St. Mary’s Church by SGM Light

In addition, from Saturday 29 October you’ll see giant, illuminated lanterns (created by talented local artists), displayed in the windows of town centre businesses. Follow the trail of beautifully designed baubles in the following businesses.  

  • The Little Teapot (Park Mall)
  • Salata (Bank Street) 
  • The Beehive (North Street) 
  • Emporia Fabric and Craft (Park Mall) 
  • The Craftship (Park Mall) 
  • Bare Bazaar (Park Mall) 
  • The Taproom (Bank Street) 
  • Liv2Dance (New Street) 
  • Leo and Sage (Elwick Place)
  • Valeries (Lower High Street) 
  • Matches Sports Bar and Grill (Elwick Place)