Although the UK's joining of the EEC in 1973 put an end to the traditional inauguration ceremony for the Carnival Queen, we do hope that one day our bureaucratic brethren across the channel will see the importance of human sacrifice.
In fact, if we may get political for a moment, the banning of such an
important local festival is simply political correctness gone mad! What right-minded individual could possibly be against the light toasting of a local virgin?
This vintage photograph is from the final inauguration from 1973, just prior to the EEC regulations regarding UK Working Environment Temperature Limits. The fire was lit promptly at 8:30 by then-popular comedian Jimmy Tarbuck, quickly smudging the low clouds with a gentle, flickering glow. Miriam Pugh, correspondent with the Dereham and Fakenham at that time wrote in her Village Notes column that 'a good time was had by all.'
We can only agree, and look back wistfully on a more tolerant time.