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Photo book chronicles 50 years of Leeds West Indian Carnival

FESTIVAL MEMORIES: Sharon Clement in The Ship, designed and made by Hughbon Condor in 2002. PIC: Tim Smith
FESTIVAL MEMORIES: Sharon Clement in The Ship, designed and made by Hughbon Condor in 2002. PIC: Tim Smith
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A picture book is celebrating 50 years of Leeds West Indian Carnival.

The hardback features more than 650 pictures of kings and queens, troupes, crowds and behind the scenes shots.

The much loved event was born in Chapeltown in 1967. It has grown into an annual showpiece of British Caribbean culture that welcomes performers from all over the country and attracts crowds of more than 150,000 people.

‘Celebrate – 50 Years of Leeds West Indian Carnival’ has four core photographers: Leroy Wenham, Tim Smith, Max Farrar and Leeds North East MP Fabian Hamilton, plus contributions from 30 others.

Guy Farrar, its co-ordinator and editor said: “Photographs and texts in this 188 page hardback book describe the key moments of a story of Caribbean-led creativity and multicultural hospitality. The book is unique; it values and celebrates the ‘ordinary’ person’s view of carnival, as participants, observers or supporters.”

Some 700 copies of the book have also been distributed free to various learning institutions.

Mr Farrar added: “I’m really pleased to say it has been distributed free to all schools and libraries in Leeds as well as the colleges and universities.”

The book’s foreword has been penned by Arthur France, chairman of Leeds West Indian Carnival committee.

He said: “I welcome this book with great enthusiasm. It’s very important for everyone’s education to see what Caribbean carnival is all about. I love to see pictures, especially of carnival. This book is a story in pictures of our journey since I set it in motion 50 years ago.”

The £20 book, which has mainly been funded by Arts Council England, can be obtained locally or via www.jeremymillspublishing.co.uk/bookshop for £20, plus £3.95 postage.