Adlington’s historic carnival has been cancelled amid a cash crisis.
Organisers behind the annual three-day event say they have had to pull the plug due to a lack of funding.
It is only the second time in its 40-year history that the carnival has been cancelled, but the committee says it has been left with no alternative.
Thousands of people flock to watch the popular parade march through the town and enjoy the funfair and many attractions on the Jubilee Playing Fields.
Committee spokesman Jennie Snape said: “We are really sad that there will be no carnival this year, but we are finding it increasingly difficult to secure enough funding from local businesses to ensure that the carnival is successful.
“With the rising costs and less support, the event simply can’t go ahead and this will be a great loss to the community.”
Mrs Snape, who has been a volunteer on the committee for 14 years, said the members hope that the carnival will return in 2012.
She added: “The carnival can cost up to £20,000 to put on and we rely on the support of the community and the generosity of local businesses.
“Everyone is finding it tough at the moment and we can’t go cap in hand asking them for money.
“Some of the money we raise is also through the sale of advertising in our programmes, but there are less and less businesses in Adlington who we can go to.
“The cost of bands for the parade, fencing, marquees and insurance have all gone up and that is before we think about finding prizes, cabaret acts and entertainment.”
The carnival usually runs in August and is opened by a celebrity, in the past attracting stars from the likes of Coronation Street and shows including Shameless.
Any money raised after the costs are paid for is pledged to charity.
Jennie added: “The committee is still going to meet once a month and we will continue to work tirelessly to raise enough money for the 2012 carnival.
“We have already lined up a series of events including Easter bingo at the Conservative Club, in Railway Road, on April 21, a Ladies’ Evening at the Waggon and Horses on July 8 and a murder mystery night in October.
“We also have plans for a family fun day on July 17 that will include the popular baby show and dog show from the carnival as well as lots of fun and games.
“However, in order for us to run the carnival again I cannot stress how much we need the support of the local community in whatever capacity big or small.”
To join the organising committee ring Sue on 07792391011.