Lantern Parade - Maybole 500th Annivesary
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The Lantern Parade organised by the M500 organisers was a fantastic success. Local residents have been commenting on how proud they were to be there and loved their heritage being showcased.

Over the four week project, Carrick Rural Arts Group worked with 16 different clubs and schools and organised and ran 33 workshops. The total number of participants was just over 400 and the total number of lanterns made was 262. Guests were the Marquess and Marchioness of Ailsa, Provost Helen Moonie, Corri Wilson MP and local councillors.

The workshops ran smoothly with two local Ayrshire based artists, Chelsea Rodger and Vicky Randlo, learning the skills of lantern making and gaining valuable experience of community arts in practice. Young people participating were engaged in discussions about their local history with images relating to key historical events, buildings, characters and industries being represented on the lanterns. They worked alongside artists from Carrick Rural Arts Group who brought a wealth of community arts, lantern and prop making skills and experience to the project. On the night the finale show production team consisted of four people based in Ayrshire and one from Glasgow.

The lantern parade attracted about 180 lantern bearers plus family members and torch bearers resulting in around 400 people in the parade plus a good number of spectators lining the streets. Thanks go to Maybole Pipe Band, SheBoom, local police, venues such as Carrick Centre, St Cuthbert’s Hall, the First Aid team, the Marquess and Marchioness of Ailsa, Provost Moonie, and local politicians. In addition a big “Thank you” to Maybole Golf Club for use of the clubhouse for storage, Jim Kennedy for use of his farm for storing fire sculptures on Friday night, John Jamieson for barriers and storage of big lanterns after the event and the Community Council and Maybole over 50s for providing Stewards and Maybole Fire Officers for providing fire wardens.

Maybole Community Council is grateful for financial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Ayrshire LEADER, North Carrick Community Benefit Company, Ayrshire Youth Arts Network and South Ayrshire Council.

With fantastic weather on the night the event itself was a great success backed up by the many positive comments on Facebook.The large Castle and Tollbooth lanterns will remain in the community for use in future projects.

Click on images below to view full size

Following on from the success of the Lantern Parade, the committee organising the Maybole 500 events have arranged an open evening in the Town Hall at 7pm on Monday, April 10. They would love to see as many representatives of local organisations as possible as well as individuals as plans are being put in place for a gala pageant on Saturday June 10.

A number of groups are already supporting the Maybole 500 project but the organisers would like everyone to have the chance of being involved. The evening will include an update on what's happening in the project, discussion on how you and your groups can get involved, a prize draw of 50 Guineas for the winner of a Maybole 500 Facebook competition, tea/coffee and time to view displays including videos of the Lantern Procession.

More details on the prize draw will be available soon on The community has secured funding from Ayrshire LEADER, Heritage Lottery Fund and local funders to enable it to mark the 500th anniversary of Maybole receiving its Burgh of Barony status in 1516.

Maybole 500 is working with young people and older people in Maybole and North Carrick. The project will run until August this year and will celebrate the area’s rich heritage and history. They will be exploring everything from Robert the Bruce to Robert Burns, from Buildings to Boot and Shoe Making, Eisenhower to the Earl of Carrick, Prince Charles.

They hope everyone in North Carrick will get involved and enjoy events including “Picnic in the Park” with Jousting at the Glebe on  June 4, a Pageant with historical costumes during Maybole Gala on June 10, and an Exhibition looking at the history and heritage of Maybole’s landmark buildings in July or August.

Watch the press, Facebook, and local websites for news of events and ways for you to get involved.