THIS year a record number of girls came forward to fight for the chance of being crowned the Royal Wootton Bassett Carnival Queen.

About 40 girls went to Longleaze Primary School last Thursday for the chance to win the title of this year’s carnival queen, carnival princess or one of the butterfly princesses.

The youngsters will have pride of place at this year’s carnival which will parade through the town on May 17.

Ceri Pridding, a member of Royal Wootton Bassett Carnival Committee, said: “Lots of people entered this year so I think it helped that we held it at a primary school.

“We’ve always had a carnival queen and princesses and I think it’s a nice tradition.”

Youngsters in Year 2 and below could enter the butterfly princess category, while carnival princesses needed to be in Year 3 to Year 6. Anyone in Year 7 or above could enter to be the carnival queen.

But despite the competition, only four little beauties could wear the crowns after being judged by Linda Frost, the Mayor of Royal Wootton Bassett, Deputy Mayor Sue Hughes, President of Royal Wootton Bassett Town Rotary Club, Marie Bernhardt, and Miss Swindon 2014, Catissa Creighton.

Ceri said: “Each of them had to walk across a little stage and answer a couple of questions by the judges, like what were their hobbies, where they went to school or nursery, who was their favourite teacher and if they had three wishes what would they be. “Lots of them asked for a mansion or a big house, some of them asked for more wishes and another asked for her daddy who is working in Canada to come home which was so sweet.

“I am glad I wasn’t doing the judging, I think it was really close in the end.”

Young Josephine Lee and Natasha Taperek were eventually crowned the butterfly princesses while Jemma Lynch was crowned the carnival princess and Megan Lynch was the carnival queen.

The carnival royals will ride in front of the procession on Carnival Day in a car provided by Function Cars of Purton.