PARADE HIT: Borough wins top award at New Year’s Day event
Borough wins best display at the 2016 event after two close calls
HILLINGDON’S people sang, danced and grooved their way to victory as the borough was crowned the best at this year’s New Year’s Day Parade in London.
A 40-strong cast from Ruislip Manor’s JAM2000 Performing Arts & Agency had the crowds dancing in the streets with their Disney-inspired costumes, routines and float, depicting the theme ‘30 Magical Years of the London New Year’s Day Parade’.
It was third time lucky for Hillingdon and JAM2000 director Judy McPhee and her team, having been runners up in 2014 and third last year.
Ms McPhee and her cast, aged five to 50-plus, triumphed over 15 rival boroughs this year and scooped £10,000 for the Mayor of Hillingdon’s Charity Appeal.
Ms McPhee said: “We were in it to win it and we won it! It was a real team effort involving so many people behind the scenes, as well as JAM2000’s wonderful performers.
“It was a lot of hard work but well worth every minute to come first and win so much money for local charity. I am very proud of what we achieved.”
The borough’s entry, ‘Dreams Can Come True in Hillingdon’, featured nearly every Disney character from Mickey Mouse to Olaf from Frozen and Aerial the Little Mermaid.
The float went in front of the JAM2000 cast, who sang and danced for two hours along the parade route, with Cruella Deville waving to the crowd from a Mini car, themed around 101 Dalmatians, bringing up the rear.
The JAM2000 performers were among 8,500 participants from across the world, including 20 marching bands from the USA and 1,000 cheerleaders.
The parade from Green Park to Parliament Square was watched by 50,000 spectators along the route and beamed live to a worldwide television audience of some 300 million.
A Frozen-themed float was especially hand-built for Hillingdon by Judy’s husband, Gordon McPhee, from materials donated by Redrow Homes, Taylor Wimpey, Reddingtons Ltd, O’Halloran & O’Brien Ltd and Modebest Builders Ltd.
Smart Removals also allowed Hillingdon to borrow a lorry for the occasion.
n SPOTTED: (Clockwise from above) Disney characters Cruella Deville, Genie and Scar and Mickey Mouse were part of the parade