Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Jersey Battle of Flowers

The Jersey Battle of Flowers is an annual carnival held in the Channel Island of Jersey in the second week of August. The festival consists of music, funfairs, dancers, majorettes and a parade of flower floats alongside various street entertainers. It was inaugurated in 1902 to celebrate the Coronation of Edward VII. The largest attendance to date is thought to be that of 1969, when 60,000 people were present.

The major floats are usually produced by the parishes of Jersey. Miss Battle of Flowers, the overall winner of the Miss Parish contests, rides on her own specially made float. There was also formerly a Maid of Honour who rode with the Miss Battle but this has now been dropped. The tradition of having a Mr Battle to escort Miss Battle was in abeyance for a number of years, but Kyran Bracken revived the rĂ´le in 2007, and 2008 saw Christopher Biggins occupying the role.

The 'Battle' itself originally consisted of dismantling the floats to provide floral ammunition for a literal battle of flowers between participants and spectators, but this aspect has long been abandoned. Since 1989, a nighttime Moonlight Parade with the floats festooned in lights has been introduced. The Moonlight parade ends with a large fireworks display.

The event has recently been the target of much criticism over fears that the transportation of foreign and exotic flowers to the island is unnecessarily increasing the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, contributing to global warming.

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See Also : Florist Bouquet, Online Flower, Gifts Australia

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