St Paul's Carnival: Scaled-down event honours elders

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St Pauls Carnival: Back A Yard
Image caption,
Festival organisers said they expect the full-scale carnival will return next year

Hundreds of people attended a "scaled-back" St Paul's Carnival focused on going "back to its roots".

Instead of a parade and sound systems, artists, food vendors and the community's elders were highlighted in the Bristol event.

Carnival organisers said it was a "thank you" to the people who had supported them during the pandemic.

St Paul's Carnival executive director LaToyah McAllister-Jones said the "full fat carnival" will return next year.

The Bristol festival celebrating African-Caribbean culture normally attracts an estimated 100,000 people.

But this year the committee instead ran a "series of summer of activities" titled "Back A Yard" for local people.

Image caption,
The full-scale event normally attracts over 100,00 people from across the UK and Europe
Image source, LaToyah McAllister-Jones
Image caption,
Ms Jones said this years event was more "community focused"

"It's a colloquial saying that comes from the islands. It means back home, back with your friends, in your back yard," said Ms Jones.

"The idea of Back A Yard is about coming back to the community .

"Its a bit of a love letter to our community, saying thank you to St Paul's for supporting us right throughout the pandemic.

"We were very disappointed that we weren't able to bring it back this year. It's [been] challenging."

Image source, The Green Way Project
Image caption,
Mr Crooks was in charge of cooking the elders brunch this year

Glen's Kitchen restaurant owner Glen Crooks, also known as chef, said he enjoyed making the elders brunch this year.

"They've been here so long. If they hadn't come here I wouldn't be here," he said.

"So its very important for us to look after them. I like cooking for them and singing for them.

"They came here back in the days and had to leave that all behind, but the good thing is that they brought it here."

Image caption,
Chef Levi Roots attended this year's celebration as the festival's new board chair
Image caption,
Dance and exercise groups performed for the community

St Paul's Carnival event producer Esther Afikiruweh said she also enjoyed celebrating the elders annual brunch.

"Its an event that we have every year whether there's the big carnival or not, honouring and celebrating the elders of St Paul's community," she said.

"We've had the opportunity to go back to the roots of carnival. It's reminding us why we put this on in the first place."

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