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Whalley Pickwick Festival organisers promise event revamp
4:30pm Thursday 12th December 2013 in News
THE organisers of the Whalley Pickwick Festival have promised to revamp the annual event after a series of problems hit this year’s bonanza.
The committee of the Victorian-themed event, which was celebrating its 25th anniversary, have apologised to Ribchester runner David Moretta who was booked to help kick off proceedings.
David, who recently completed 18 marathons in 18 days for charity, was briefly name-checked and ended up playing a very small part in opening the ceremony.
The committee also apologised after bad weather during the day prevented many stalls, children’s rides and a giant ferris wheel being set up.
The management team fell three hours behind on their preparations and the VIPs weren’t briefed ‘sufficiently’ on how the opening ceremony would proceed.
Preparations were also hampered after guest of honour Malcolm Hebden, who plays Norris Cole in Coronation Street, only arrived from Manchester minutes before the festival was due to be declared open.
Chairman Neil Martin said the committee was now discussing ways to ‘slim down’ the opening ceremony and freshen the event for next year.
Mr Martin said: “We regret that because of Malcolm Hebden being late to the opening ceremony and the fact that the team fell three hours behind schedule, that much more was not made of David’s recent achievements.
“Personal apologies were made to David as soon as we could and I also want to extend that to any visitors who expected to see more of him.
“The very bad weather during the day stopped us from putting up the giant ferris wheel and prevented a lot of stalls from being set up.
“Other children’s rides were stuck in traffic and were unable to make it to Whalley.
“The committee are very sorry that they had to miss the event and apologise to everyone who had looked forward to visiting them.
“We are in talks about how to change the event for next year and I hope it will make it more exciting.
“I was impressed with how the event went overall considering how many problems we faced on the day.”
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