THIS year’s Colchester Carnival procession will be going down the High Street – despite fears it might have to be re-routed.
A diversion seemed likely because the street was to be closed on carnival day, Saturday, July 19, to allow a giant crane to carry out work as part of the Williams & Griffin department store revamp.
Essex County Council had already agreed to the road closure to accomodate the 350- tonne crane when Colchester Council sanctioned the procession on the same day.
Williams & Griffin is in the middle of a £30million refurb, but has saved the day, by putting off the crane’s visit until the following weekend.
Wille Gee’s managing director, Carl Milton, said: “When we were notified of the clash of dates, we were eager not to spoil people’s enjoyment of the carnival.
“Having consulted our principal contractor, McAlpine, and the borough and county councils, we are pleased to have been able to reschedule the road closure to July 25-27.”
Carnival organisers have now resubmitted their own road closure application but do not expect any more problems.
John Godfrey, chairman, said: “I’m really confident it’s all systems go. We are just waiting for the final approval from the council.”
Martin Hunt, councillor responsible for street services, said: “I am delighted the matter has been resolved and look forward to the prospect of a very exciting carnival day.”
The council has thanked all parties for their co-operation, and particularly Williams & Griffin.
Since 2011, the revived carnival has been organised by Colchester Round Table and Colchester Ladies’ Circle.
The procession usually starts in Circular Road North and heads along Butt Road, Headgate, Head Street and High Street, ending up in Castle Park.
Faced with the High Street closure, organisers had planned an alternative route,