Literary characters come to life at this year’s Waterloo Carnival

On Friday 8 July, the thirteenth annual Waterloo Carnival will take to the streets to celebrate our creative community in what is set to be a spectacle of colour, music and festivity. This year the theme is favourite literary characters. Here at Coin Street we like to be carnival-ready for the big day and will be throwing a free pre-Waterloo Carnival party and workshop with Rambert for parents and carers of children under 8 years old on 5 July, 1.30-3pm.

On Waterloo Carnival day, make your way to Millennium Green to partake in the day of family friendly fun alongside your favourite book characters.

At 11.30am a fun hour of storytelling, face painting and crafts for 0-5 year olds (and their adults) will get the carnival festivities going. Remember to bring your picnic along, and why not base it on one of the mouth-watering meals from literature?

The magnificent carnival procession, involving Coin Street’s Family & Children’s Centre children and families, starts at 1.30pm on Tanswell Street. Watch all the fictional characters spring out of the pages of books and into the streets of Waterloo to the rhythm of the music and look out for any bright and colourful Coin Street flags which were made in the over 50s art sessions.


The celebrations will culminate in the Carnival Finale at Waterloo Millennium Green from 2pm, where MP Kate Hoey will deliver the closing speech.

After all of the day’s excitement, volunteers from Coin Street will be helping to run a storytelling and interactive session at 2.30pm, to provide a relaxing wind down for 0-5 year olds (and their adults).

The party (for over 18s only) continues at Cubana from 5pm until late, where the brilliant salsa band, Latin Dimension, will be playing live music and Cuban Street food and cocktails will be served into the evening.

Visit for fabulous costume inspiration, free downloadable masks and more details on the event.