Carmarthenshire County Council has announced that for the first time in its 42 year history the Llanelli Christmas Carnival will not be held this year.
The decision to cancel the Llanelli Christmas Carnival has been made in line with current Welsh Government guidance and increasing concerns about the spread of coronavirus linked to large gatherings.
Although not to completely disappoint local families this year the plans are to try and still celebrate Christmas by holding Llanelli’s first ever virtual carnival.
On the night that the Christmas Carnival should have been held the town’s illuminations will be switched on and an online celebration will be hosted on Carmarthenshire County Council’s social media channels including music, the chance to reminisce over past carnivals and there is hope that local businesses and organisations will create a carnival scene for the town’s first ever virtual parade as well.
Llanelli’s Christmas tree is also being relocated to a more visible location for passers-by, at the busy Gelli-Onn junction near West End.
Cllr Peter Hughes Griffiths, Carmarthenshire County Council’s Executive Board Member for Culture, Sport and Tourism, said: “We have made this decision with a very heavy heart as we know how much the carnival means to the people of Llanelli. This is the first time since it started over 40 years ago that we have had to take a decision like this and we are as disappointed as I’m sure everyone else will be.
“We are determined to do something special to keep the tradition alive and planning is now underway to hold a virtual carnival on what would have been the night of the traditional festivities.”
Cllr Shahana Najmi, Leader of Llanelli Town Council said: “The Llanelli Christmas Carnival is the highlight in the calendar for thousands of people and whilst we’re sorry we can’t hold the traditional carnival this year, we are pleased to be working with partners on an online celebration which we hope people will get involved with and enjoy.”
Cllr Tegwen Devichand, Leader of Llanelli Rural Council, said: “Generations of families have enjoyed Llanelli’s Christmas carnival over the years and we’re disappointed that for this first time in its history we are unable to put on the parade. We hope people will understand the decision and support the plans we’re developing for the town’s first virtual carnival.”
Roger Bowen, of Llanelli Round Table, added: “Llanelli’s carnival night is an important night as it raises a great amount of money for local charities and brings many communities together with such tremendous work on the floats, which really makes the evening such a special event. We hope that people will find other ways to give generously and support good causes in our communities.”
Carmarthenshire County Council will be releasing more info in the coming weeks of how people can get involved and enjoy the planned virtual carnival.
Ymlaen Llanelli have sadly announced that due to the coronavirus outbreak they have decided to cancel all their remaining events they had planned for 2020 which includes the Llanelli Reindeer Parade.
They are looking into covid safe initiatives to hold over the coming months in the lead up to Christmas to keep spirits up so fingers crossed there may still be some fun activities for the kids to join in with.