Torchlight organisers have been thinking big to create the tiniest torchlight to date.
Each year, thousands of people line the streets in their thousands to make way for the massive procession of vehicles, bands, floats, dancers and walking groups that make up this annual spectacle. Due to the current government safety guidelines, this will not be possible and the traditional procession and street party have been cancelled for this year.
The creative team behind the event have come up with a safe and novel way to host an alternative event to keep the spirit of Torchlight alive. The team have created a “Tiny Torchlight Procession” with individuals, families, community groups and local companies invited to enter miniature creations, which will be filmed by a professional film company against the backdrop of the procession route, to re-create a full procession in miniature.
Tiny Torchlight will be streamed live on 7pm on Facebook Saturday the 26th September and will be available to see on the Torchlight website.
Organising Group Team leader Craig Russell said:
“Torchlight brings the community together and promotes the great culture of South Lakeland. The restrictions necessary due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic will impact on Kendal Torchlight 2020 and it is with much regret that we are unable to proceed with the traditional Kendal Torchlight Procession and Street Party over the weekend of the 25th and 26th September.
We knew the procession and street party needed a crowd to make it happen. This is too much of a risk in creating more cases of covid-19. We then moved to plan an online event ‘Tiny Torchlight’ and to bring a Torchlight Convoy to a street near you, this would embody the spirit of Torchlight.
The Tiny Torchlight will allow us to create a virtual procession that everyone can watch online, from the safety of their own homes and also be accessible to those who may not have been able to get out to the procession in the past. We are encouraging anyone who would like to get involved to create something, incorporating this year’s theme ‘Think Local, Act Global’, and also to create pieces that remind them of past years processions. It couldn’t be easier to get involved and this year, you don’t need a marshall to take part. We can use all these creative skills that people have been honing over lockdown and get making.
In addition to Tiny Torchlight, there will be a small convoy of sculptures travelling around Kendal during the afternoon 26th September, including music from Drum Nation and Milnthorpe Steel Band. We hope that this will give people a taster of the procession which they can enjoy locally in a safe and socially distant way.
It’s the whole community that makes Torchlight the special event that it is, so we are hoping that we can all work together, even though we can’t gather in person, to make something special this year that we will have for years to come.”
Heron Hill 1pm
Castle Estate 1.20pm
Vicarage Drive 3.30pm
The spotlight is on Kendal
Community spirit and creative expression are at the heart of this event and despite our ‘new normal’ these are as prevalent as ever. For a small town, Kendal can certainly pack a punch!
And in the year that should have seen the 50th Kendal Torchlight Gathering there is no better time to look back over the history of the event and celebrate the best that Kendal has to offer.