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Spectacle, Ritual and Festivity in the Ilford Hospital Carnival, 1905-1914

SPORT AND LEISURE HISTORY SEMINAR

‘THE DRAB SUBURBAN STREETS WERE METAMORPHOSED INTO A VERITABLE FAIRYLAND’: SPECTACLE, RITUAL AND FESTIVITY IN THE ILFORD HOSPITAL CARNIVAL, 1905-1914

Speaker: Dion Georgiou (Queen Mary, University of London)

Time and Date: 5:15 PM, Monday, 5th November.

Location: Gordon Room (Room G34), Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU.

Ilford, in Essex, typified the rapid suburban expansion that took place around London during the late Victorian and Edwardian era, its population quadrupling during the 1890s and then doubling again during the 1900s to reach nearly 80,000 by 1911. This huge growth in population fuelled demand for the establishment of a local emergency hospital and in order to finance this development, residents held an annual carnival every July from 1905 to 1914. The carnival was a huge success, raising increasing amounts for the hospital each year and eventually attracting crowds estimated at over 100,000. Continue reading