Sparks Will Fly as Thurrock prepares for carnival

Sparks Will Fly on Sunday, 3 June, should be a spectacular event with a “giant” celebration of the Olympic Torch Relay.

Thurrock’s part of the Essex-wide Sparks Will Fly celebration starts at noon on the second day of T-Fest 12 in the Hawkes Close, Grays car park.

One of two champions travelling around Essex during May and June will lead the procession to T-Fest at Grays Beach Park.

They will pick up the Thurrock “bead” which highlights the heart of Thurrock and is being created by local artist Lata Upadhyaya.

Lata said the bead — which has to be a specific size and weight — would consist of containers, representing Thurrock’s links to the River Thames and industry, and show photographs of some of the borough’s iconic sites such as the QEII bridge, Lakeside and the Woolmarket, Horndon-on-the-Hill.

Once the bead is handed over, it will form part of an Essex-wide celebration set for Friday, 6 July, the date the Olympic Torch Relay travels through the county, at Hylands park, Chelmsford where the two champions meet for the first time to play The Game, pitting their strength against each other as they conjure up wind, water and fire in a spectacular fiery showdown.

In Grays, at noon on Sunday, 3 June, the carnival parade will travel from the Hawkes Close car park – the main Thurrock Council car park off New Road, Grays – and travel along Sherfield Road to Argent Street, turning left towards Manor Way and then right before entering the park.

Led by Jugnu Bhangra Group the parade will include other Thurrock musical groups and 50 carnival dancers from Gable Hall School.

All are welcome to join the fun and anybody interested in joining the parade is asked to contact the council via the Thameside Theatre box office number 0845 300 5264 or by email or for further information and to get involved in T-Fest contact the festival team on 01375652472 or

Those taking part can walk, push or pull – the only rule is … no engines!

T-Fest 12 is free and open to all between 10am and 7pm on both days. As well as headline acts, the attractions will include a mini-Olympic arena, a bunting workshop, a food court and a fun fair.

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