Pensioners given weekend at Butlins to avoid the carnival

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Pensioners who want to avoid the partying crowds of the Notting Hill Carnival are to be treated by the local council to a free holiday at Butlins.

Pensioners who want to avoid the partying crowds of the Notting Hill Carnival are to be treated by the local council to a free holiday at Butlins.

For the first time this year the Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is paying for 40 older residents in west London to travel to Bognor Regis to escape what has become Europe's biggest street party.

Merrick Cockell, leader of the Conservative authority, which has funded the £10,000 scheme, said: "Elderly residents in Notting Hill are more vulnerable during carnival time but they do not have a very loud voice.

"This is the first year we've decided to take them away altogether. When we made the booking at Butlins, we were told it was always a popular time of year among older Notting Hill residents who wanted to get away from the carnival." Yesterday carnival organisers said the theme of this year's event on 28 and 29 August would be Freedom and Justice, to celebrate the carnival's 40th anniversary and the 170th anniversary of the abolition of slavery in Trinidad and Tobago, birthplace of carnival culture.

The street party, second only to Rio Carnival, traditionally attracts up to a million revellers and generates £93m for the capital. Last year, numbers dropped to 800,000, but organisers hope the anniversary will attract more revellers.

Ten thousand police will also be on duty through the weekend - the same number as last year - working with 80 CCTV cameras that will create a "bird's eye view" of Notting Hill.

Comments