Moving tribute on city’s big night out
ORGANISERS of Wells City Carnival have said that it was a very successful night – and a fitting tribute to Martin Coppell, the chief marshal for 20 years, who died earlier this year.
Some of the carts turned off their lights and music and the crowd stood in silence near the start of the circuit in Martin’s memory.
“We paid homage to our old mate,” said Wells Carnival president Maurice Day.
“The silence was eerie. I said a few words, and at the end of the silence a huge cheer went up and there was applause.
“It was a good occasion to remember a good carnivalite. He was there with us.”
He added: “We had a very successful night, and it all sailed through.”
Money collected on the night was counted the next day and totalled £11,500, with more expected to be added – on a par with previous years. There were more copper coins than ever in this year’s collection, with £1,045 in 1ps, £1,360 in 2ps, £1,601 in 5ps and £2,301 in £1 coins.
The lucky programme number was 1890, but the £25 prize has still to be claimed.
Some carnival-goers complained of delays getting home afterwards.
“Wells Carnival was as great as it is every year but was spoilt this year by the closure of Glastonbury Road at the end,” said Deborah Jones.
“This led to a completely chaotic gridlock and then a very long journey home and has put me and others off going again, which is a shame as it also raises money for good causes.”
Maurice said that the road is closed for a time every year, and that it was open again by 10.30pm.