THE skies cleared on Easter Monday to let the sun shine on the bonny entrants in the Lyme Regis Easter Bonnet Parade.

Organisers, the Lyme Regis Regatta and Carnival Committee, feared the rain would force them to cancel the parade, but entrants and spectators turned out in their hundreds to support the annual event.

The colourful parade, led by Lyme Regis Junior Town Band with Lyme Regis Majorettes bringing up the rear, wound its way from Langmoor Gardens and down Broad Street to Theatre Square, where judging of the entrants took place in a range of categories.

The judges given the difficult task of deciding the winners were Jackie Hedley-Tuffs, Colin Boyd, Colin and Judith Pothercary and Ann Bradbury, with prizes going to the first to fourth places in each category and a chocolate egg for every entrant.

Committee chairman Teresa Evemy said: "It went very well.

"We were a bit worried about the weather to start off with but it cleared up and there were lots of people in town.

"The street was actually as busy as on the carnival day.

"We didn't expect anyone to be there because it was such a nasty day so when we came out of Langmoor Gardens it was really nice to see all those people - we were really appreciative of them coming out."

There were more entries than ever for the competition, and the standard was high.

"We were quite surprised at the number of entries considering the weather," said Mrs Evemy.

Also getting in the spirit with their decorated bonnets were town mayor Sally Holman, mayoress Jane Whittington and town crier Phil Street.

Coun Holman said: "We were a bit surprised with the weather - we thought it might be a washout but actually the sun came out for us and there was a bigger entry with the Easter bonnets than there has ever been.

"There were lots and lots of people watching the parade so it has been really good for Lyme and I am sure that lots of visitors enjoyed it as well."