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July 8, 2011

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Carnival event turns into damp squib

Carnival organisers  in the Lake District banned a wet sponge-throwing event on health and safety grounds, saying the sponges might get dirty and someone could end up with grit in their eye.

The Daily Telegraph reports that the event had been a traditional favourite at the carnival in Ulverston, where visitors could aim sponges at unfortunate volunteers in the stocks. But the event last Saturday went ahead with water pistols, not sponges.

Organiser Ralph Spours said: “We decided that, in the face of health and safety, it would make better sense to use super-soakers instead.

“We did note that sometimes when the sponges were landing on the ground, they were landing in dirt and grit, being put back in the water butts and thrown again, and there was a danger that people could get grit in their eye.”

Furness MP John Woodcock was at the carnival with his daughter and said: “There is a concern on a general level that people are growing more fearful to do what they want to because of the health and safety guidance that has been expanding in recent years. I think people shouldn’t be put off doing what they want to do because of health and safety laws and it is the guidance that needs to be addressed.”

Click here for the story in the Daily Telegraph.

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