Fox Carnival Band
    Colours and Materials
Digital brollies - coming your way!

Colours and Materials
We know most of you think of the umbrella as quintessentially British. But the basic umbrella was invented over four thousand years ago and there is evidence of umbrellas in the ancient art and artifacts of Egypt, Assyria, Greece, and China.

Initially, these ancient umbrellas provided shade from the sun. The Chinese were the first to waterproof them, gaining protection from the rain. They waxed and lacquered paper parasols to use them as portable shelters.

During the 16th century, umbrellas appeared in the western world, popular especially for the rainy weather of northern Europe. Here, however, they were first seen as female accessories. Then the Persian traveler and writer, Jonas Hanway (1712-1786), used an umbrella in England over a thirty year-period. This made them popular among gentleman who often called them a "Hanway."

The first all-umbrella shop in England was James Smith and Sons, which opened in 1830, and remains a landmark at 53 New Oxford St, London. Fox Carnivalists should note that, in 1852, one Samuel Fox designed the actual steel-ribbed umbrella! Also, it was an African-American inventor, William C. Carter, who patented an umbrella stand in 1885.

We are delighted with our theme for Carnival 2005. Not only does it make us think about the world-wide issue of water. Transforming simple umbrellas is also true to Carnival - with its tradition of making magic from simple things. (CLICK HERE for perhaps the finest example: how the steel pans of Carnival evolved).

Everyone needs shelter. We won't waste the rain!

Helping Out
Carnival Year by Year