THOUSANDS of people turned out for the Redditch Carnival, the first time the event has been held in 19 years.

A parade, featuring Xtreme Mas Caribbean Carnival Dancers from Leicester with fabulous costumes, the Oya Batucada Samba Band, and a number of walking groups started from Edward Street car park just after noon on Saturday.

From there it headed to the bandstand on Church Green.

READ MORE: Live report from the big day

Among those watching was Brenda, who says she can remember the old carnival.

"It is a really lovely atmosphere and good for the town," she said.

"There has not been anything like this for a long time. Those organising it should be very proud of themselves."

On Church Green there was live music and dance acts from a number of groups, as well as a bouncy castle, food stalls, and games and activities as much more.

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There was also Wilson’s Fun Fair, which has supported the carnival since the very beginning.

Amanda Haden, chair of Redditch Carnival Association, said: "Well, we asked you to support the carnival and my goodness you all did just that. We are overwhelmed by the love and support shown for the Carnival.

"So many of you voted with your feet and came to watch. The energy and buzz in town during and after the parade had to be experienced to be believed.

"This made all the hard work worth it. We would like to thank each and every one of you for being part of such a special day."

She added: "We are delighted to announce that the next carnival will take place on September 19 2020.

"If you would like to be a part of the carnival or parade, whether as a business or on a personal basis, or join our committee to help, then please contact amanda2531@outlook.com."

Redditch MP Rachel Maclean, who took part in the parade, said: "What an amazing atmosphere at the Redditch Carnival. There was huge support for the event! An enormous tribute to the hard work of all the organisers and volunteers - well done."