VOTE: Would you like to see the clowns return to Bognor Regis?

Dizzy Dez introduces his pretty pink flamingo to the delight of the  children.''Picture by Louise Adams C130298-6 Bog Clowns
Dizzy Dez introduces his pretty pink flamingo to the delight of the children.''Picture by Louise Adams C130298-6 Bog Clowns

CLOWNS have spoken of their desire to be back in Bognor Regis next year.

The funnymen and women are keen to find a way to return to their clowning home.

Silly Tilly, the membership secretary of Clowns’ International, said: “We would just love to know we are coming back to Bognor.

“We do see Bognor as the home to the clowns and we want to keep coming here.

“We love it here and we hope Bognor would love to have us back.

“We have to house and feed 100 clowns for a few days. It could be that we could find rooms in people’s houses.

“It would only need 50 people with two spare rooms and we will have the accommodation we need.

“We have a long history with Bognor and we have only been coming to Butlin’s for a few years. We could return without them.”

Last weekend’s clowns’ event was the last in a series from 2006. Butlin’s, which hosted the Circus Circus weekend, has decided to axe the event. The holiday company’s involvement, with Bognor Regis Town Council’s help, was crucial to getting the clowns back after the original convention ended in 1994 after starting in 1985.

Gingernutt, Clowns’ International’s vice-chairman, said: “I’m sad this could be the last event in Bognor. Bognor has been good to us and for us.

“I wish the weather had been better. That’s been the only downside. But times change, people change and events change.”

Zaz said: “Having been brought up in Bognor, I’m sad we do not have the space to host the clowns.

“I would like to propose we can still keep some sort of clowns’ event in the town.”

The latest gathering attracted 100 clowns of whom 23 travelled from overseas. Many came from Denmark, four from Ireland and others from New Zealand, France, the USA and the Azores.

Paul Wells, the deputy town mayor, said: “The clowns have been part and parcel of Bognor for decades. I’m sad this could be their last visit. I will be keen to see if we work out something for the future, but that will depend on a lot of different factors.”

The town council set aside £4,000 for this year’s event. Sue Holmes, its events officer, said all events were debated at the end of each year when the new budgets were compiled.

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Would you like to see the clowns return to town? Have your say in the voting panel to the right, and leave your comments below.