A CARNIVAL queen is urging her loyal supporters to give generously and help secure the event’s future.
Aimee Matthews has been chosen as this year’s queen for the historic Titchfield Carnival, which regularly attracts up to 5,000 visitors.
And as a life-long resident of the village, Aimee wants to make the most of her year and keep it running for generations to come.
The 15-year-old Henry Cort School pupil said: ‘I came third last year so I was hoping I could do it this year, but there was a bit of competition.
‘I was shocked when they said I had won. I was speechless, I didn’t know what to say.
‘I was on the float last year and it was lot of fun, but this year I’ve got a bit more responsibility.’
As queen Aimee will visit 20 other fairs and carnivals in the region over the coming year. ‘I’m looking forward to it,’ she added. ‘I can’t wait to represent Titchfield.’
The event has been running for 130 years, but in recent years has been struggling to make ends meet.
Money raised on the day is used by the organisers, the Titchfield Bonfire Boys Society, to put on the following year’s event, but it has never made a profit.
But the society also prides itself on using money raised to help local community groups and organisations.
Aimee said: ‘I want everyone to donate to the carnival so we can keep it going. Everyone loves the carnival and they should give what they can.’
Mum Tracy Matthews, of Ransome Close in Titchfield, entered the competition herself as a teenager.
She said: ‘I’m so proud of her – it’s fantastic. I was up on the float as part of the royalty, but she’s beaten me, I could only ever come second.
‘We’ve lived in Titchfield all our lives, so this is a big part of our tradition. To become carnival queen is a big thing in the village, people always want to know who it’s going to be.
‘Obviously I’m biased because I’m her mum, but it’s good to have a proper Titchfield girl as the queen.’
Aimee’s first official duty will be tomorrow at the Titchfield Fayre on Barry’s Meadow from 2pm to 5pm.
The carnival takes place on Sunday, October 23.