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Last Updated: Friday, 29 April, 2005, 11:09 GMT 12:09 UK
Town's fancy dress fiesta is axed
Revellers at Llanidloes Fancy Dress
Revellers pulled out the stops - and the wigs - for Llani fancy dress
Wales' largest fancy dress party has been cancelled this year, with organisers blaming increasing red tape.

For more than 30 years Llanidloes in Powys has welcomed up to 5,000 revellers to the event in July.

However, increased health and safety rules have added costs to such a extent that officials have pulled the plug.

Llani Fancy Dress, as it was known, attracted people from across Wales and parts of England.

The Friends of Fancy Dress made the announcement this week following talks with Dyfed-Powys Police. It is unclear whether the party will go-ahead next year.

Under new guidelines the organisers were expected to pay for risk assessments and employ up to 60 stewards to marshal the event.

Recent changes to health and safety legislation means that we cannot run this event
Victoria Lee

The cancellation will come as a huge economic blow to businesses in Llanidloes that rely on the 5,000 or so fancy dress visitors each year.

One of the organisers Victoria Lee said: "Recent changes to health and safety legislation means that we cannot run this event, as it stands, any longer."

Llanidloes Town Council said people would be disappointed in the town.

"If the friends feel that necessary safety measures cannot be put in place by 1 July, we can see that they had no option but to cancel the event," the council said.

Thousands gathered in Llanidloes for what locals called 'fancy dress'

Former town mayor Cllr Gareth Morgan, who helped judge the fancy dress competition, said: "The town council ran the event until a few years ago, but it grew to such a proportion that it was a huge responsibility and the council could not carry on with it.

"Under new legislation up to 60 stewards would be required and you can't just have Joe Bloggs and his family and friends doing it.

"They all have to be approved and need to have passed all the necessary tests."

Cllr Morgan, who said it was Wales' answer to London's Notting Hill Carnival, added: "We live in such a litigious society now that the organisers could not afford not to have everything appropriate in place."

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17 Jul 04 |  South West Wales

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