Carnival Street Party

Saturday 15th September 2018

Kendal Torchlight 2018 takes place on Friday 14th September, with the Kendal Street Party on Saturday 15th September.

Thanks to support local partners and sponsors the Torchlight organising team have begun organising the 2018 street party.

The annual procession through Kendal will take place as usual on the evening of Friday 15th September, but on the Saturday afternoon the town centre will be taken over by a host of carnival arts performances and workshops. In addition we will host a live stage which will feature live music acts and performers, and host the Torchlight Trophy Presentation.

Details on what to look forward to this year can be viewed below.

Get Involved

We are now accepting entries for this year’s Carnival. You can download our entry form by clicking the button below.

If you’d like to be involved in any part of the planning or content of the Kendal Torchlight weekend please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Entry forms for Torchlight are available now.


Following The Success…

The first ever Kendal Carnival street party was held in 2016, and proved a huge success. Now in it’s third year it is established as a great successor to the procession and great entertainment in it’s own right. Thank you to all the individuals and organisations who made it happen. This year, we are doing it all again!

Below is the schedule of events for 2017. This will be updated once the 2018 schedule has been finalised.

Come along, enjoy the music and get involved, it’s party time!  Worried about finding our bands?  We are sure you will hear them, but if you don’t, look out for them around the Main Street, Birdcage and Westmorland Shopping Centre.

Milnthorpe Steel Band

Performance and Workshop

A community band based near Milnthorpe playing a mix of much loved tunes.  Join them as they perform some of their favourites from their playlist to get Kendal dancing.

Blue Jam Arts Samba Band

Blue Jam’s Community Samba Band “B Jamba” will be leading drumming workshops for anyone who wants to have a go at playing Samba!  You don’t need a drum, just energy and enthusiasm.  Come and create some ‘call and response beats’ and join in the performance at the end.

Bay Beats

An excitable horn heavy community collective now heading into its 24th year as More Music’s longest running project.  Bay Beats will be roaming around town bringing beats, cheesy tunes, spectacular trombone solos and sing-a-long moments throughout the day.

Blast Furness

BLAST Furness, the 20 strong and 20 year old street band of the ancient town of Ulverston in South Cumbria, demonstrates freedom with joyous musical reverberations leaping between New Orleans, Brazil and Jamaica their dancy tunes and wild spirit guarantee every stomp is a party romp.

The Fairly Famous Family

The Fairly Famous Family have been touring outdoor performances for the last 18 years.  Through their shows, they entertain, inspire and surprise with high quality, original street theatre.   They are likely to pop up just about anywhere so keep your eyes peeled.


Fancy Dress, Dress Fancy and you could win a prize….

Dressing up isn’t just for the Torchlight Carnival procession – not where we are concerned! This year we are encouraging you all to wear fancy dress to our Carnival Street Party too. There are no excuses, as many of you have a fancy dress costume that you wore last night in the Carnival procession.

If Lakeland Radio or one of our Fancy Dress Spies spot you in the crowd, you could be joining Lakeland Radio on stage showcasing your fab costume. If you are wearing fancy dress and want to be in with a chance of winning a super prize, visit our Information tent by the Birdcage to complete your entry.

Programme for the Day


10.30-11.30 Bay Beats
12.15 – 1.15 Blue Jam Arts
1.30-3.00 Milnthorpe Steel Band
3.00 -3.45 Blast Furness

Westmorland Shopping centre

11.00-12.00 Blue Jam Arts
12.45-1.15 Blast Furness
3.00 – 4.00 Bay Beats

Performance Area

10 -11am Richard Smith
11am – 12pm The Fairly Famous Family
12pm – 1pm The Pied Piper of Hamelin
1pm – 2pm From the Top School of Dance
2pm – 3pm Torkari School of Theatre Arts
3pm – 4pm The Fairly Famous Family

Timings may change on the day, please look out for our daily timetable

Get Stuck In!

Don’t miss our series of carnival workshops and fun activities for you to pop along and have a go. All carnival workshops are aimed at a broad range of ages; most are available for you to dip in and out throughout the day.

Stricklandgate and Highgate

Drop in and have a go anytime between 10.00am and 4.00pm (*unless stated)

ABLAZE working with Jane Blackburn

Preston-based carnival youth group ABLAZE are adding colour and excitement to the town centre with their “off the wall expressions” costumes. Pop along as we invite you to have a go making carnival Headdresses. Look out for their roaming artists during the day wearing their spectacular costumes.

Love Arts Carnival Unicorns (free)

Love Art Workshops is run by community artist Lana Grindley who works with local groups and individuals, encouraging the use of artistic activities to support their development and improve their quality of life. Join them for a fun day making fabulous carnival unicorns

Bongo Balloons Balloon Modelling (£1 per balloon model)

*Drop in between 11.00 – 4pm for our balloon modelling workshops whatever your age. Kendal based balloon artists Bongo Balloons, will share some top tips with you.)

Snap Happy in our Costume Cabin

Dress up, pull faces and pose and smile! We’ll take a photo and email it over to you as a keepsake. You could even join our photo gallery on Facebook too.


Ragtag Arts (free)

Ragtag Arts is a community based group in Kendal, running all kinds of creative workshops including circus skills and arts and Crafts.

Circus workshops

Pop along and join the Ragtag Circus and have a go at juggling, plate spinning, unicycling, stilt walking and much much more! There will be all kinds of activities running throughout the day with a chance to take part in the Ragtag circus show.

Cardboard Castle

Continuing Torchlight Carnivals’ theme of Fairy Tales this year, Ragtag Arts will be building a fairy tale castle and they need your help. Will it be a castle for Rapunzel, or where the Giant lives from Jack and the Beanstalk? No carpentry skills required….. just imagination! They’ll be building, sticking, cutting out, painting, decorating (making a lot of mess) and playing away the day.

Vintage Fair

Roll up roll up, come and join us at our vintage fair.

This year, we are introducing our Vintage Fair, with lots of traditional side stalls that we all love to have a go at.

Kendal Torchlight Carnival has traditionally supported many local charities, and this year we are doubling our efforts! Not only have we supported out Charity Partners on Friday evening at the Carnival Procession, but we are going one step further this year to support more charities on Saturday at our Street Party.

So, come on, have a go at the Pot Shy, Tombola, Tin Can Tower and Play your Cards Right to name just a few.

You will be supporting some fabulous charities whilst having fun – so what could be better? Come and say hi to the following charities between 10.00am and 4.00pm – they are all waiting to say hi back!