Arts Council England
Community focused ‘Carnival of History’ to celebrate the 900th anniversary of Leeds Castle
Leeds Castle (Kent) is to celebrate its 900 birthday with a stunning carnival parade that will look back over nine centuries of its fascinating history – with a generous contribution of £59,500 National Lottery funding from the Arts Council.
This 27 & 28 July, the Kent landmark will celebrate a huge milestone in its history. The weekend’s festivities will be bursting with activities, all culminating in a colourful carnival parade that will wind its way around the castle parkland.
The local community will be at the heart of the parade, with hundreds of local performers, volunteers and participants from North Kent joining the procession shoulder-to-shoulder with professional artists like Dizzy O’Dare and Acrojou.
The carnival’s theme will celebrate the Leeds Castle’s incredible and diverse history over the last nine centuries. It has been a Norman stronghold, a palace for Henry VIII, a Georgian mansion and during World War II, it was even a hospital.
The parade will be divided into nine sections, with each one representing what happened during a century in the castle’s history. Each century will include a lead-costume figure, an animal and a floral emblem – this could be a 12th century bishop or a 14th century queen; a wolf, dragon or griffin; a rose, magical mandrake of golden lilies.
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