A WATER SLIDE running alongside the Market Place and a zip wire across the fish pond are being planned as part of a big party next year which locals hope will rekindle the carnival spirit in Ashbourne.
A small group of volunteers are hatching a plan, which has been enthusiastically backed by Ashbourne Town Council, to throw a massive party in the town centre and recreation ground – with a giant water slide and zip wire as the thrilling centrepieces.
The project, which was devised by a group of friends who remember and miss the glory days of Ashbourne Carnival, presented the idea to Ashbourne Town Council at its recent meeting and councillors have promised to help turn it into a new event for the community to enjoy.
Helen Lyons, who spotted a temporary town centre water slide that had been planned for Mickleover on Facebook, got together a few like-minded friends to see if a similar one could be installed in Ashbourne.
She said: "I just saw it on Facebook and thought 'what a great idea, wouldn't it be great if Ashbourne could have something like that'.
"When I think back to the Queen's Jubilee and Ashbourne's Carnival I just think people would love to see a big street party in the town again.
"What we'd love to see is a proper big party for Ashbourne, something free that anyone can enjoy, for people of all ages with affordable prices."
Since the idea was first mooted and the group formed, it has been taken to Ashbourne Town Council's recent meeting where councillors pledged to give it their full support.
Councillor Steve Bull said: "I think we ought to rubber stamp it and get on with it personally. Let's give this town a big bash.
"Let's put on a big party and show people the town council is still alive."
The event, which is pencilled in for May next year, will feature fun and games, live music and, organisers hope, a water slide and zip wire.
The water slide, which could run down Market Place or Park Road, would be similar to one due to be set up in Mickleover next month.
The 100 metre track is expected to attract around 20,000 people to watch dozens of thrill-seekers slide down.
A similar slide was set up in May in Bristol and nearly 100,000 people applied to have a go.
The organisers, who have formed a committee to take the project forward, are now on the hunt for supporters and sponsors.