In the run up to the winter festivities, plans to reinstate the parade on December 8 are afoot, with the launch of a new public fundraising appeal.

Revive Cardigan’s Giant Lantern Parade by supporting Small World Theatre and joining a local fundraising campaign that has the backing of Cardigan Town Council, Ceredigion County Council and Leafed Through community bookshop.

Cardigan-based Small World Theatre is renowned for its community work. Following a tradition that they began in 2016, Small World Theatre will create a new ‘Fanastical Beasts’ themed parade with giant illuminated lantern structures, and a fabulous array of handheld lanterns, free lantern making workshops for families, sessions with schools and other local community groups.

In its fourth year in 2019, the attraction brought 13,500 people to town to enjoy and take part in the festivities. This year, the team is determined to revive the parade and offer families the chance to be part of an inclusive, exciting event that brings people together.

Cardigan Lantern Parade
The December parade drew thousands of people into Cardigan in 2019 (Heather Birnie)

Marketing Manager Sam Vicary said: “In 2020 we launched our first Localgiving fundraiser to support working with families, providing creative workshops and play for young people who were affected by the pandemic.

“Today we ask for your help with our second fundraiser so we can restore Cardigan’s spectacular Giant Lantern Parade to the town.”

Executive Director Ann Shrosbree added: “Sadly, our efforts to raise financial support through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund were unsuccessful. We’re working non-stop to find alternative funds. We’ve set a fundraising target of £2,000 for this campaign to cover the lantern materials, so that we can provide free lantern making workshops to Cardigan and the wider community. If we’re lucky enough to exceed this target, the funds will go towards the parade’s other costs.”

The organisers hope that this campaign is an opportunity to bring the Lantern Parade into the forefront of people’s minds and establish a long-term plan for its continuation as a prominent event in the town’s annual events calendar, shining a light in the lengthening dark of mid-winter.

Artistic Director Bill Hamblett said: “We are so grateful to those who can support by donating and helping with our fundraising appeal. Without you we will not be able to create this year’s proposed parade”.

To support the lantern parade with a donation, follow this link. Your donation will cover your lantern making and contribute towards a non-paying participant who isn’t able to donate.

To find out how you can get involved in fundraising/supporting the campaign, please contact Sam [email protected] / 01239 615 952.