The Pageant was opened by the Mayor of Dover, Councillor Bob Tant, with the Mayor of Calais, Monsieur Jean-Jacques Barthe.
Dover Express and East Kent News
Friday May 6, 1983
DOVER hasn't seen anything like it in 75 years. Victorians and Vikings strolled around Connaught Park together, beautiful ladies in crinoline dresses and Roundheads and Roman invader paraded across the grass. The event was the Dover Pageant 1983 and thousands of people flocked to the pack on Bank Holiday Monday.
The day began with a downpour and ended with one but the sun made an appearance and the rain held off in between.
It has taken Mr Mike McFarnell, of Harold Street, Dover, two years to prepare for the Dover Pageant.
"I was very pleased with the outcome," he said afterwards. "I only wish the weather had been a bit better."
A crowd estimated by Mr McFarnell at 5,000 enjoyed, the grand Parade, the chariot races and other historical trips through time taking place throughout the day. There were also stalls and other entertainments for families to enjoy.
But because of the amount of organisation needed, Mr McFarnell has decided to hold the Pageant every two years lnstead of annually as he at first hoped.
"The next Pageant will be held in 1985. It does take a great deal of organisng and I don't think It would have the same impact on Dover if it was held every year," he said.
The Mayor received the key to Connaught Park from 86-year-old Miss Mariaane sergeant, of Dolphin House, Dover, who took part in the last Dover Pageant in 1908. Miss Sargeant dressed up as a Saxon girl 75 years ago.
Highlight ot the day was the grand parade with hundreds from organisations and schools throughout Dover parading in costumes of all ages.
Chariot races were held with teams from Dover Rugby Club, Dover Fire Station,
The Roman Quay public house, Dover Life Guard Club and the Saffron Majorettes.
The court of King Henry VIII by pupils from St Mary's school, Dover, and the Duke of York's Royal Military School band were the two of best received p1ays. There was music by the Clans and displays by majorettes.
Godwynhurst Play Group