THE future of the Penrith May Day Carnival has been thrown into doubt after the organisers pulled out of any future events.

For more than 40 years, the Penrith May Day Carnival has provided a day of fun for Penrith people. 

Created and organised by Penrith Lions Club, the event has become a firm favourite in the town’s annual calendar. 

This year, with the help of a network of local organisations and the local councils, Penrith Lions put on a carnival that attracted thousands of local residents and visitors.

But the Lions have said that the ‘regulatory framework’ for the carnival has steadily become ‘more complex’.

They said that the cost during the last twelve months to ensure compliance in areas such as health and safety and noise control has increased considerably, as too has the cost of securing public liability insurance.

In the aftermath of the 2024 May Day Carnival, the members of Penrith Lions Club have undertaken a detailed review of the event. 

This has led them to conclude that the demands of the carnival’s organisation now exceed the capacity of the club and ‘with great regret’, they have taken the decision that Penrith Lions Club will no longer take the lead role in organising the town’s May Day Carnival.

The group said it wanted to place on record its 'grateful thanks' to all those who have helped it with the planning and delivery of the carnival over the years. 

The group said that ‘particular recognition’ must be given to the financial support provided by Penrith Town Council and Penrith BID that enabled the 2024 event to take place, and the many hours of hard work freely given by the staff of the town council in guiding the organisers through a ‘maze’ of administrative detail.

The president of Penrith Lions club, John Rogerson said: “We would all like to see the carnival continue but, sadly, have to recognise that our club simply does not have the capacity that is now necessary to plan and deliver a May Day Carnival that meets the expectations of local people.”