Portchester Gala hailed as a big success

Comedian Ken Cheng with his prize for the Dave's Funniest Joke Of The Edinburgh Fringe award. Picture: UKTV Dave/Martina Salvi/PA Wire

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A HISTORIC gala has been declared ‘the best for years’ by members of the Portchester Community Association.

Hundreds of onlookers lined the streets last weekend to see the colourful and imaginative floats created by schools, nurseries and community groups.

JUDGES' PICK Castle Primary School's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory float. ''Picture: Sarah Standing (131674-8436)

JUDGES' PICK Castle Primary School's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory float. ''Picture: Sarah Standing (131674-8436)

Onlookers were entertained by marching bands, Scout troops, acrobats, trikes and vintage cars.

Sarah Moss, manager of the Portchester Community Association, said: ‘After two years when it rained, everyone pulled out the stops to make it a great show.

‘Local traders were a magnificent support for the carnival and they donated tremendous prizes for the raffle, the proceeds from which will support Portchester precinct’s Christmas tree and lights. Such was the success of the gala that stalls and carnival entries are booking spaces for next year.’

Sarah thanked all who contributed and the 70 plus volunteers who helped out.

Portchester East ward Cllr Jeff Fazackerley judged carnival entries along with mayor of Fareham Cllr Susan Bayford and consort Cllr Brian Bayford.

Cllr Susan Bayford said: ‘It was a happy day. I admire all the people who put it together.

‘It was a fantastic event. I would like to congratulate every involved.’

Despite the windy weather, a bumper number of stalls and sideshows featured.

The arena events all ran smoothly presenting colourful spectacles of dance and music throughout the day.

Among the displays was Zebedee, the Canine Partner demonstration dog who impressed the audience with his skills in assisting disabled people to live independently.

Community category

· Winner: The Christmas Tree Fairy aka Stella Bell

· Runner-up: Trikes

Pre-School category

· Winner: Andy Pandy Pre-School, theme Thomas the tank engine

· Runner-up: Portchester Campus Day Nursery, theme room groups including caterpillars and butterflies

Children & Young People category

· Winner: Castle Primary School, theme family time featuring Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

· Runner-up: Friends of Red Barn School, them Old Red Barn had a farm

· Highly-commended: Northern Infants & Junior School, theme African animals

Special Award

Portchester Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs)

Tug-of-War results

· Winner: Lawrence’s Legends!

· Runners-up: Your Move, the Co-op/Canine Partners and The Air Cadets