Drighlington gala back in business

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Band will be playing at Drighlington Gala.
West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Band will be playing at Drighlington Gala.

The last time Drighlington Gala was held, John Major was Prime Minister, Independence Day was breaking box office records and the Spice Girls were riding high in the pop charts.

But, after an absence of nearly 20 years the event is set to return this summer.

The gala will be held on land between Station Road and Moorland Road on July 4 – incidentally Independence Day .

A parade will take place through the village between 11am and noon, lead by the West Yorkshire Fire Service brass band.

Organiser Andrew Hutchison, who is also a Drighlington parish councillor, said the event was the end of nearly a year’s worth of organising.

He said: “We put a lot of work into this.

“We have eight people on the committee and they’ve worked really hard to get it going.

“My wife has lived in Drig all her life and she remembers the gala from when she was a child, as do a lot of other people who grew up here.

“So me and some of the other councillors decided to start it again.”

The event itself will be opened by the Gala Queen.

And the new gala queen will be crowned by the last girl who won it back in 1996.

The crowning will be followed by various events including galloping acrobats, gorillas and Polly’s parrots.

Coun Hutchison said: “A couple of animal rights groups got the wrong end of the stick when we announced gorillas.

“We got emails telling us they were going to protest, we eventually had to tell them that they were men in gorilla costumes.

“But seriously, I think it is important for us to bring something like this back, so we can have the sort of sense of community in the area that we used to have.”

The event will also feature sheep dog trials and an air ambulance landing.

Waltzers and roller coasters will also be available for young thrillseekers, as well as trampolines and train rides.

The day’s festivities will be ended with a tug o war competition.

For more information on the event, or to get involved with the tug o war, visit www.facebook.com/ Drigcouncil.