invites you to


Build a giant puppet (or a crowd of smaller puppets) and join the Skipton Puppet Parade on Sunday 6th October 2019

We’re looking for local community groups to build puppets and join in with the glorious musical celebration that is the Puppet Parade. Build a parade puppet that sparks your imagination, and come celebrate as over 6,000 people line the streets of our town for the spectacle.


The Puppet Festival happens over the weekend of 4th -6th October 2019. The parade line-up is from between 10.00am and 11.00am for a 12.00noon start on Sunday 6th October at Ermysted’s Grammar School. The Parade route is one kilometre, with puppets dancing down the High Street and round to the Festival Canal Basin Hub.


INSECT LIFE’ - Bugs, butterflies, beetles and bees, we are celebrating our extraordinary and diverse insect kingdom which is so important for life on earth. Legs, wings or things with stings! We need them all at the dazzling and diverse Puppet Parade. Feel free to interpret this as closely or as loosely as you like! Looking for ideas? - Just dive into the crazy world that is Entomology


Whatever you create must be both robust and light enough to be carried/danced the entire parade route. Parade puppets work best if they can be seen from a distance. Think of the height you carry them. Simple structures and shapes, and simple movements work best - don’t get carried away and over-engineer your creation. Your puppet should be robust to withstand a light breeze or a light shower of rain. We encourage resourcefulness and inventiveness - the world’s your oyster! Our only rule is no motors and no electronics.

Please note that in the event of heavy rain/terrible weather, the parade would be cancelled.


It doesn’t need to cost much at all especially if you build your puppet from existing or recycled materials. However thanks to the support of local charities the festival has a small pot of money to offer small grants of up to £100 per group, to support the purchase of puppet making materials.

To apply for a grant, please provide the information detailed in the sign up area below, together with an itemised list of materials, with prices, by 16th August 2019.


You might use fabric, willow withies, cardboard, staples, bamboo poles, gaffer tape, masking tape; you might use recycled materials, or you might visit a Scrap Store. We recommend visiting Scrap Stuff in Farsley in Leeds - - or Scraptastic in Shipley - In addition to the Fent Shop and Boyes in Skipton there is also Immanuel Fabrics in Burnley.

You will own your puppets; after the event you must take them home.


REGISTER  -  We require that you register your participation with us, even if you don’t need a grant, so that we can manage and inform the parade participants safely.

PARTICIPATION  -  is open to everybody; please register.

GRANTS  -  are only available to community and voluntary groups, charities and schools. -  No commercial organisations. Grants are not available to families and individuals. Grants will be awarded at the Festival’s discretion; our decision is final.

TRANSPORT - You are responsible for getting your group and your puppet(s) to and from the event.   

HEALTH & SAFETY  -  Puppets must be designed with parade safety in mind, so performers must be able to see where they’re going, and be unlikely to bump into onlookers. Puppets can be supported by multiple members of the group (e.g. Chinese dragon-style puppets).

THE FINAL WORD -   Skipton Puppet Festival reserves the right to exclude puppets from the parade

on the grounds of health and safety or inappropriateness. The organisers’ decision will be final.


For your group to participate, we’d like the following information:

If you are applying for a grant to help with material costs, please provide a breakdown of costs. The deadline for the grant application is 30th June 2019 and will be awarded at the festivals discretion. By accepting a grant to build a puppet/puppets, you are also committing to participate in the Puppet Parade on Sunday 6th October 2019.

Please send your sign up information to Bev Logan:

Email Bev with any questions you may have.

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