ALTHOUGH there will not be a traditional carnival week in Sedgemoor this year, there will be a variety of smaller events to commemorate The Gunpowder Plot.

Carnivalites in the district are hosting Sedgemoor Masquerade Week at the end of October/beginning of November with a variety show, firework displays, street entertainment and a costume parade.

Organisers of Bridgwater Carnival and Burnham-on-Sea Carnival joined forces after the carnival processions and concerts were cancelled for a second year running.

READ MORE: Guy Fawkes carnivals in Somerset cancelled due to Covid-19

Dave Croker, chairman of Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival Committee, said: “Despite the fact that our carnival concerts and illuminated carnival processions which we know and love will not return to their full glory until 2022, it really is positive to be in a position to organise some much needed entertainment and enjoyment for the town.

“So many community events have been cancelled due to the pandemic, and even though we will not have a single carnival cart in sight, these low key and symbolic activities which we are planning will hopefully put a smile back on all of our faces and help us prepare for the 2022 carnival season.”

The week will consist of the following events:


  • Variety Show, Bridgwater Town Hall, October 31 - November 4

Presented by Bridgwater Gangs & Features Clubs, Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival, and Bridgwater Town Council. Performances start 3pm on Sunday and 7pm on Monday to Thursday.

  • Firework Display, St Matthew's Field, November 5

Sponsored by Bridgwater Town Council and supported by Sedgemoor District Council. Car parking on the field from 6pm - £5 per car with proceeds to the official carnival charity. A fun fair will also be present in St Matthew’s Field.

  • Street Entertainment/Grand Costume Parade, Bridgwater Town Centre, November 6

At 2.30pm, street entertainment begins. At 5.30pm, there will be a Grand Costume Parade followed by a simultaneous squibbing display. At 7.30pm there will be a virtual carnival called Through the Decades.

READ MORE: Details released of virtual Bridgwater Guy Fawkes replacing cancelled event


  • Firework display, Esplanade, November 7

Event organised by Burnham & Highbridge Town Council.

  • Grand Costume Parade, November 8

Phil New, chairman of Highbridge & Burnham-On-Sea Carnival Committee, added: “I am really looking forward to the week of activities, and now is the time to bring back a bit of normality to Sedgemoor.

“In Burnham, we dedicate this year’s grand costume parade to all of the key workers who have been on the front line throughout the pandemic, as well as all of the volunteers who have played a major supporting role.”

The Variety Show, at Bridgwater Town Hall, will run from October 31 until November 4. It is one of the first live events to be staged at the hall since the start of the pandemic.

Bridgwater Mercury:

The three and a half hour long shows will take place on:

  • Sunday, October 31 2021, 3pm
  • Monday, November 1 2021, 7pm
  • Tuesday, November 2 2021, 7pm
  • Wednesday, November 3 2021, 7pm
  • Thursday, November 4 2021, 7pm

Arthur Leigh, president of Bridgwater Gangs and Features, said: “Due to the pandemic and like many other events around the country, we have been unable to hold our annual carnival concerts and Old Folks Shows now for the past two years.

“This unique variety show gives everyone in carnival the opportunity to work together again, in a socially distanced and Covid secure way, and I am really looking forward to seeing our carnivalites back on the stage and entertaining the public again."

The tickets, sponsored by Reflections, cost £5 and can be bought from the Carnival Centre or by calling 01278 428220.

Cllr Leigh Redman, Mayor of Bridgwater, added: “After the Pandemic restrictions were eased, I recognised how important it was for the town to safely return to some sort of normality, and as a Bridgwater boy who had been involved with carnival for 20 years, I was also keen to find a way to support and boost fundraising for Bridgwater Carnival 2022.

“So with the approval of Bridgwater Town Council, and after discussions with the carnival clubs and committee, we were pleased to offer the town hall facilities free of charge to allow this special variety show to go ahead.

“All funds raised from the performances will go towards carnival funds, and as well as giving Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival a massive reboot, it will also be a great boost for our town and the local economy.

“Bridgwater Carnival means a lot to our town, it is a big part of our community, and as Mayor it gives me great pleasure to help in this way.

"I cannot wait to see the show, and I would like to thank all of the carnivalites involved for their tremendous efforts."