KICS is a Registered Community Interest Company SCO 327566



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Our story


KICS - Kilsyth International Carnival Society - was formed in 2003 by a group of local residents keen to bring world music and culture to the beautiful Colzium estate - a public woodland and country house gifted to the people of Kilsyth with a magnificent outdoor stage and natural arena. The three original directors were Suleman, Jill and Rob, (right) and they were supported from the start by a constantly changing and expanding group of young volunteers, relatives, friends, and well-wishers. The start-up capital - some 47! - was raised through running a drumming workshop at Edinburgh's Treefest. Our objectives were then, as now, to run an annual carnival, to celebrate cultural diversity, and to support youth cultural activities - craft, costume making and music. The first years festival was modest enough, but attracted a large and enthusiastic audience of over 2,000, and it was quickly clear that this could become an annual event.


Meanwhile we continued to involve young people, founding a Taiko band, the Demon Drummers, which provides young people with music training and the chance to perform in public.


In 2005 Rob and Suleman travelled to Tumu in northern Ghana to recruit a group of Sissala dancers and drummers - the result was the spectacular performance in Kilsyth by Gandawi two years later in 2007. (right)


North Lanarkshire Council and local businesses contributed in cash or kind, and most of the remaining costs were raised from selling programmes/entry fees, advertising and from vendor contributions. From 2003 to 2007 Carnival grew in cultural stature as a one-day event, whilst audience figures steadied out around 5,000. And over the years we have always been able to muster support from business and local government, as well as fundraising for special projects from, amongst others, Event Scotland, Communities Scotland, the Lottery, the Scottish Community Foundation, the Foundation for Sport and the Arts, and other grant-giving bodies.


In 2007 we became formally incorporated as a Community Interest Company limited by guarantee in order to provide the benefit of limited personal liability to the directors, subjected to external regulation, and with our assets locked for the future benefit of the community.


Our community programmes continued, e.g. promoting Taiko drumming in Craigalbert centre for children with disabilities (left)


After five years of steady growth, we took time out in 2008 and 2009 to plan a much bigger, multi-day event, and raise the funds required from LEADER and other sources. Our main objectives were to provide a big tent to give us some protection in the event of bad weather and a midge-free evening venue, and to attract bigger headline artists. In 2010 we delivered the best festival ever. In 2011 we are taking another rest - and who knows what we can do in future with your support?


Contact KICS! 


archives from 2007

photo galleries and write-ups: the bands : the dance groups : hall of fame

the bandsdanceparadegallery1gallery2


 کارنیول festival فیسیول  mela میلہ

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