Sid Vale CC in inspection order mix-up

Hitch over VSO certificate leaves Sid Vale Carnival Club walking at Seaton Carnival

RED tape over a Vehicle Special Order certificate, left Sid Vale Carnival Club without its float for Seaton Carnival on Saturday.

Undeterred, the intrepid team entered their colourful Jokers as a walking group and came second.

It was the first carnival of the 2010 East Devon Circuit season and, said Marion Perry, Sid Vale Carnival Club’s secretary of 27 years, they were determined not to miss it.

“Due to a technical hitch the certificate didn’t get to us, so we couldn’t go on the road and just had to go as a walking entry,” she said.

Last year’s floods destroyed paperwork at the home of the club’s mechanic Richard Gillingham, including his City and Guilds certificate, which, said Marion, was required to attain the VSO, which inspects the roadworthiness of carnival floats.

The group’s other mechanic produced his certificates to apply for the order, which Marion will receive in time for the club to enter its Jokers float at Colyton Carnival procession tomorrow (Saturday).

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Marion said red tape was “a good thing” because it ensured floats would not enter processions unless roadworthy.

“We would never go out without an inspection order,” she added. “This is the first time this has happened.”

She said the club made the effort to enter a walking group so it didn’t lose out on scoring points towards the East Devon circuit cup.

“We decided to go there and have fun and say this is what we are wearing.”

The club has been hard-pushed to complete its float this year and, said Marion, it could do with more carpenters for future processions.

“We’ve had eight of them working morning, noon and night but we could do with more people to help,” she said.

“Everyone does their share, it’s just one of those things. It has taken that bit longer, but we are not the only ones to struggle to get out in time for the first week in September.”

*Sidmouth’s Tango Carnival Club won a first for its Christmas Rock & Roll float in the youth organisation’s section.