Fresh faces and new date should provide new impetus

Last year's Keighley Gala

Last year's Keighley Gala

First published in News

A 136-year-old charity gala looks set to be given a new lease of life following a “difficult” period for the event.

Keighley Gala, an annual extravaganza, now has fresh faces at the helm.

Next year the event, which has always traditionally been held on a Saturday, is shifting to Sunday.

It is hoped the change will avoid clashes with other events, thereby attracting bigger crowds into the town.

Bosses also plan to re-introduce the procession, ditched this year.

In April, the Telegraph & Argus reported how the traditional parade, complete with floats, had been axed.

At that time organisers blamed an increase in red tape and a lack of volunteers for the parade’s demise.

Attractions – including Marshalls funfair – were staged as normal at Victoria Park in July.

Other surviving aspects of the gala, including a baby show and a dog show, proved popular.

Andrew Jackson, who joined the gala committee earlier this year and has taken over as chairman, said: “We tried to make a go of this year’s gala under difficult circumstances.

“It is hoped that, with some new faces on the committee, more new people will come forward and that past contributors will return to help move things forward.”

Next year’s gala is earmarked for Sunday, August 11.

Mr Jackson has taken over the chairmanship from gala stalwart Brian Hudson, and Gillian Brown has succeeded another long-standing member – Gerald Brooksbank – as treasurer. Denise Hudson remains as secretary.

Another innovation planned for 2013 is that charities to benefit from the event’s proceeds will be chosen in advance, rather than afterwards.

Anyone interested in getting involved in the gala, or wanting details of how to nominate charities, should e-mail keighleygala2012@gmail.com.

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