Kemp Town Carnival to take sabbatical

Posted On 20 Jan 2015 at 11:38 am

This year’s Kemp Town Carnival will not go ahead because of funding cuts, organisers have announced.

Last year, the carnival made a £3,000 profit, but central government cuts mean Brighton and Hove City Council can no longer help subsidise the event by waiving fees and giving community grants.

Carnival director Mat Cook yesterday said the event would take a year out to work out how it could become self-financing.

In a statement, he said: “The KTC 2014 made a profit of approximately £3,000 that was was very much needed considering we had started in £12,000 of debt, a debt that had been slowly accumulated since 2011.

“With cuts from our central coalition government about to impact on Brighton and Hove, costs that have previously been waived or reduced each year (£7,800 of parking bay suspensions for example), can do longer be subsidised by BHCC. Combined with community funding from the council being reduced to next to nothing, and other sources of funding becoming even more unpredictable, the risks are just to great to confidently go forward this year.

“We are very disappointed that the carnival won’t be taking place in 2015, but we feel it is of vital importance that we do not risk putting the Carnival into more debt and put a plan into place that is less reliant of grants and funding, where we are literally in a lottery as to whether or not our bids are successful.

“We have been very successful in our fund raising efforts to date, raising over £120,000 in the last four years to maintain the carnival.

“This has only been possible with the brilliant support from BHCC, National Lottery Awards For All, Arts Council England, sponsors, local businesses, and residents of Kemp Town and beyond.

“However the competition to access funding from these and other sources is becoming more and more problematic. By removing the pressure of delivering an event this year, we will be able to fully explore a more sustainable model for the Kemp Town Carnival and see the event flourish in the future.

“We will be looking to hold a public meeting in a few months to share our ideas and discus plans for 2016.”

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