In poetic praise of the Carnival

At last year’s River Carnival, local poet Patrick Mooney was so inspired by the Friday night torch-lit performance on the Wye that he was moved to verse.  

We would like to thank Patrick for his poem which is printed for your enjoyment below
A Tercets / Poem by Patrick Mooney  

Friday night is launch night, 

Light the touch and set it right,

So that we can all see the light


The rain has eased,

You will be pleased,

However, there is still a cool breeze


As crowds gather along the river Wye,

Clouds clear giving way to an open sky,

It’s easy you see and I can simplify    


Dancers on stage performing,

As the audience continue forming,

The whole experience is storming


As we stand and we cheer,

It becomes clear,

I can see something in the water appear


Lanterns moving along in the darkness,

Florescent jackets bring a certain sparkle,

The sun settles, as the evening grows darker


Candlelight’s beautify,  

As the ripples electrify,

Glow in the dark butterfly


Fireworks set the black sky alight,

Everywhere around is bright,

The perfect end to a beautiful night 

The End

Has the River Carnival inspired you in any way?  Why not write in an let us know?  Or send us your inspirational thoughts and ideas fia our Facebook page or email at the carnival

On Saturday 29th April 2017, in an all new central location on King George V Playing Fields just beyond the Victoria Foot Bridge you will find the h.Energy Village. 

This small but exciting area of the 2017 River Carnival is being developed in collaboration between Herefordshire Green NetworkHerefordshire New Leaf and Herefordshire Wildlife Trust.  

There will be a lovely creative and informative watery theme running through the Village  – with children’s activities, environmental information, and lots of musical arts and fun – more on that to follow soon.
The h.Energy Village market stalls offer something for everyone. Make your own cob oven pizzas or learn about a new cycle repair café for the city. Find out how to to become a local tree warden, or how to keep Hens@Home – and meet the miniature chickens… or take part in a giant size game of chess on the Village Green. Find out what electric cars are really like, and how much they cost to run. Or just come and look at our lovely Growing Local Village vegetables!

Carnival Club for all the family

Carnival Day on Castle Green from 10am

Art fun & Carnival Mask making

11.30 Drumming workshops with Landing Mané from Jammo Jammo Arts

12.30 get together for the street Carnival which leaves at 1pm

Bring your friends along to join in the parade!

Carnival will arrive at Bishops Meadow at 2pm


Free Family Carnival Making Workshops

At The Kindle Centre

Wednesday 12th April 10am – 12 noon

Thursday 13th April 10am – 12 noon

Wednesday 19th April 10am – 12 noon

Thursday 20th April 10am – 12 noon


On Castle Green in the Carnival Club tent

Saturday 29th April

10am – 12.30pm Family workshops

1pm street Carnival sets sail!


Click image for a downloadable PDF


Make us a square

Do you want to be part of the fabric of the River Carnival and your community?

Make us a square and contribute to our big textile installation at the Hereford River Carnival 2017!

Each textile square must be 10 x 10 cm, that’s 4 x 4 inches. It can be knitted, sewn, embroidered, crocheted, batik, printed, 3D, be creative and try to reuse materials!

Come and see our group artwork materialise at the River Carnival on Saturday 29th April 2017 on Bishops Meadow, Hereford!

Join us for making and chat every Thursday evening at de Koffie Pot at the Left Bank or make a square or two at home and drop them off with us.

Join the conversation on Facebook Make us a Square

Drop off points:
– Hereford College of Arts, College Rd, Hereford HR1 1EB
– Hereford College of Arts, Folly Ln, Hereford HR1 1LT
– Rose Tinted Rags, Union Walk, Commercial Rd,The Country Bus Station, HR1 Hereford
– 33 Greyfriars Avenue, Hereford, HR4 0BE

Email images of your work and its story to:
or use #makeusasquare on instagram.

Mappa Mundi: from museum to streets

This bold and exciting, three-year project has been designed to breathe life into Hereford’s heritage.

By taking part in fun, creative, community-focused activities, the city’s population will learn about the historic, yet largely overlooked, 13th Century  Mappa Mundi-one of the city’s most valuable historical and cultural treasures.

A centrepiece for the River Carnival

The performance will form a major part of Hereford River Carnival over the next three years.  It will form the centrepiece of the newly introduced Friday night element of the Carnival on the evening of Friday 28th April and its creatures and creations will take part in both the Street Carnival and River Carnival on Saturday 29th April.

Rediscovering a hidden treasure

The Mappa Mundi, literally ‘Cloth of the World’ is fascinating, a hidden treasure. It acts as a portal into the world of the medieval mind; it’s full of humour, storytelling, mythology, history, and fascinating imaginative creations.

We intend to use these as a means to take the map down from its pedestal of isolation, and bring it to life-firing the imaginations of young and old.

We will introduce the people of Hereford to the map through street performance, breaking down the actual and imagined walls of the museum which keep the map confined within the world of academic scholarship.

The community at the heart of the action

With the full support of Hereford Cathedral (where it is housed), we will hold artistic and creative workshops involving local community theatre groups and artists, that will result in a performance event that sees the Mappa Mundi burst out of the confines of the museum and onto Hereford’s streets.

Using accessible and engaging performance and involving community groups, schools, colleges, artists and performers, our project will help people engage with the map and learn about its cultural and historic significance.

By bringing it to life in this way, we will reach a wider audience which would not normally engage with such an artefact and may be unaware of it or consider it irrelevant to them. 

An experienced creative team

The team which will deliver the project combines academic rigour with expertise in performance, proven creative flair and a track record of delivering large-scale successful community activity.

We aim to immerse the audience in the stories that will come to life from the map enabling them to walk the streets of Hereford alongside mythical creatures and medieval characters – experiencing heritage rather than merely observing them on the map.

They will understand and embrace the Mappa Mundi as Our Map of The World – an exciting reflection of our historical past and our cultural heritage something to be fascinated by and enthuse about to visitors as well be proud of.

A map for us all in the 21st Century

Our project will increase the knowledge of Hereford residents and beyond of Hereford as a city of cultural energy and richness that goes back centuries. Ultimately our project will showcase Hereford as “a cloth of the world” with its diverse communities inscribed all over it.  The project will be a major contributor, we believe, in Hereford’s bid to become City of Culture.

We will reinvigorate the Mappa Mundi with 21st Century relevance and ultimately create our own contemporary version of the Mappa Mundi with our city, Hereford at its centre demonstrating our current place in the world.

Friday night festivities

The programme is currently in rehearsal but the fantastical performance will begin at the Cathedral, make its way down Gwynne St. over the Old Bridge and onto Bishop’s Meadow, while a torch-lit river procession of floats decorated with giant mythical beasts glides down the Wye. There will then be food, drinks and more music on Bishop’s Meadow as well as a fire garden display to round off the evening before the performers prepare for the River Carnival fun the next day.

For more information or sponsorship opportunities, please contact:
Stuart Fox (01432) 760204 / 07841 000431 or email:

Hereford River Carnival 2017 gets afloat with Nozstock: The Hidden Valley

Award-winning events join forces to make a bigger splash on 28 & 29 April

Hereford and the River Wye will once again be alive with fun and watery festivities as the city’s River Carnival comes to town on Friday 28th and Saturday 29th April. 

Visit our Nozstock page for the latest updates on the lineup!

And this year the Carnival will receive a marvellous musical boost as the award-winning team behind the boutique family festival, Nozstock The Hidden Valley will join in the celebrations bringing its own brand of family-orientated festivity to Castle Green.

Both Hereford River Carnival and Nozstock were winners in the events category at the Visit Herefordshire Awards 2016 which is where River Carnival organisers Becca Huggett and Jo Henshaw met with Rob Nosworthy  of Nozstock and first began to hatch a scheme to work together.

“It seemed like the perfect match,” said Rebecca Huggett, “Nozstock is known for its down to earth, family-focused atmosphere and that is exactly what you get at the River Carnival.  We were delighted when Rob, Toki, and Ella said that they would like to run the music tent on Castle Green.   This will add to the brilliant music we already have from the Music Pool on Bishop’s Meadow plus our fantastic resident DJs Reggae Pie and Wild Hare Club to offer something for everyone.”

Toki Allison added, “Nozstock’s ethos is about bringing play to everyone, in whatever form it can. We strongly believe in the value of not only entertaining, but in participation and contribution.  These values are shared 100 per cent by the River Carnival, so to become a part of it seemed an obvious thing to do.  We’re thrilled to be involved, and as well as some fantastic festival favourites in our live music programme, we will be organising some fun family activities and bringing some of Nozstock’s 2017 surrealism theme to play in the Street Carnival on the day.”

The Hereford River Carnival was revived in 2014 and is a day of fun for everyone, celebrating the beauty and vitality of the River Wye and the life and opportunities that it brings to the city and people of Hereford.  In 2016, around 12,000 people joined the fun despite the chilly spring weather and organisers are hoping for a bigger turn out in 2017 following last year’s success. 

It is run entirely by volunteers and because it is run by the people of Hereford for the people of Hereford, it remains an extraordinary and exciting event, unique in the Hereford calendar.

This year, as well as the main event on Saturday daytime, the Carnival will have the added attraction of an amazing torch-lit performance on the Friday night (28th April).  The performance will feature a range of mythical beasts inspired by the creatures on the city’s Mappa Mundi and is part of a major three-year project to celebrate this most important Hereford cultural icon.  Entitled Mappa Mundi: out of the museum and into the streets, it is a joint venture between the River Carnival and Hereford Cathedral and will feature performers from the Courtyard Youth Theatre, DanceFest and local musicians – more details to follow soon.

Rebecca Huggett continued, “River Carnival 2017 will feature the Street Carnival, and all the music, dance, great food, the h.Energy village that people have told us they love, and of course the afternoon will be rounded off in style by the City of Hereford Rotary Club duck race.  But as well as Nozstock, there are a number of other exciting new additions this year like the Friday night Mappa Mundi performance and the people of Hereford should watch out for more details coming soon.”

For more information on how to get involved, build a raft, volunteer or simply come along on the day, contact the Carnival on like us on Facebook Hereford River Carnival, follow us on Twitter @WyeCarnival or visit our website at

(c) Howard Willson. Used with permission.

Carnival Food Village – can you be there?

We are excited to be having a foodie village this year which will be up on Castle Green. We’ve got some really exciting purveyors of scrumptious food coming but we are still looking for the following:-

  • A cheese maker / seller
  • Something hot and spicy (possibly noodles / curry)
  • A Lebanese / Felafel type food vendor

We are only looking for finest, homemade, local people. If you think that’s you please get in touch.