Bright lights over Parkwood

Story by Kate Sheldrick | Photos by Osama Maghder Montfort

What do an elephant, parrot, rabbit, snail, and a family of roe deer have in common? They were all seen together in the form of lanterns on Saturday 15th October at Parkwood Springs. The Beacons Lantern procession began as part of Off the Shelf festival but has now become an
annual event. Organisers explained that it was created so that everyone could participate and different parts of the community could come together in an enjoyable way.

A crowd of people walk away with their lanterns, a large colourful snail in the foreground
And off they go! – photo by Osama Maghder Montfort
Two men smiling in front of a bird lantern made of tissue paper and willow, as dusks falls over the park
Smiling faces at the parade – photo by Osama Maghder Montfort
A colourful elephant lantern made of tissue paper and willow on grass
A beautiful larger-than-life elephant lantern – photo by Osama Maghder Montfort

This year the festivities started with rousing music from the Sheffield Samba Band. People from all parts of the Burngreave community were coming together greeting family and friends. Many groups including the Sea Cadets and Scouts also came along  Then the procession began, led by the Master of Ceremonies and the samba band, people followed the route through the woods at a leisurely pace. There was a myriad of lanterns in a range of shapes, colours, and sizes, all proudly held by their creators The Hemming family from Shirecliffe enjoyed the event saying: “The children liked it, and it was an opportunity to be outdoors, with food available too!”  Rebecca, who came along with a friend, said there was “a very nice community spirit.”  The procession ended back on the playing field and as dusk was falling, the bright lanterns were seen to their full effect. There was a shadow puppet performance and more music from the samba band before
it was time to go home.  Linda Jones said she would certainly recommend the Beacons Lantern Procession, “It’s wonderful, with a good community spirit, and so uplifting.”