GIANT baron puppets decorated by Trowbridge, Bradford on Avon, Melksham, Westbury and Warminster brought colour to the streets of Salisbury on Monday for a pageant to celebrate the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta.

Organised by Wiltshire Council, the procession was made up of representatives from all over Wiltshire, parading 18 larger-than-life puppet barons from the Market Square to Salisbury Cathedral.

The puppets, about eight feet tall, represented the group of rebel barons who met King John at Runnymede eight centuries ago to the day, when he agreed to a series of promises to uphold the rights of individuals.

The BIG Community Grow represented Trowbridge along with pupils from The Mead and Castle Mead Primary School, who helped design the town’s baron puppet, which was decorated in the image of Trowbridge’s baron Henry de Bohun.

Mel Jacob, who runs BIG Community Grow with Jacky Good, said: “It was an amazing event. We didn’t get home until after 11pm, but it was lovely to see all the different towns come together.

“Everyone’s barons were very different and we did ours to look as much like Henry de Bohun as possible, as unlike the other towns we have our own baron.

“There was a fantastic atmosphere and it was like being at a carnival. Everyone was dancing around and people were dressed in lots of interesting costumes. The children loved being a part of it and were getting the crowd to cheer for Trowbridge.

“When we got to the cathedral there were loads of pyrotechnics and it looked really impressive when it got dark. It was a great way for the Wiltshire community to come together and celebrate the Magna Carta.”

Bradford on Avon’s puppet baron represented the town’s history and showcased a design which was inspired from the traditional industries of the town, including wool, rubber and bicycles.

The creative partner for the puppet was Wellie O'Driscoll, from Made in Bradford on Avon, who worked with community area manager Peter Dunford on the design.

Representatives from the town’s youth network and Bradford on Avon Town Council also took part in the pageant trail, which concluded in the creation of a new great charter for Wiltshire.

Pupils from Kingdown School and youth clubs in Warminster, with the help of local artist Lesley Fudge, also decorated a baron to represent the town before taking part in the celebrations.

They came up with ‘Freedom, Fun, Fairness’ as the clause that they would want in the Magna Carta and displayed it on their banner during the procession, where they were joined by Warminster Walkers and Military Wives Choir.

Westbury mayor David Bradshaw said: “I’ve never seen so many people in my life, there must have been thousands who turned out.

“Me and my wife Myra along with Keith Harvey the town clerk joined behind our baron which had been designed and carried by children from Matravers School.

“We also had an apple cart which was handing out apples as I’m led to believe Westbury was quite well-known for its apples in the past.

“I was proud to represent Westbury in the parade and in an event that won’t happen again in anyone’s lifetime.”