Life began in 1966 for the Renegades Carnival Club (initially called Wellworthy CC). Roger Evans, David Elson, Jim Bartlett, Albert Ford and a few others, got together and discussed forming a carnival club. With the exception of Roger Evans, they all worked at the Wellworthy piston manufacturing plant in Bridgwater. The company agreed that the newly formed club could use its large car parking area as a site on which the club could build its cart. During the autumn of 1966, the members met at the King William Inn, popularly known as the King Billy. It was too late to enter the 1966 carnival but in plenty of time to start the fund raising for the following year. A weekly raffle held within the factory was organised and once a week Albert Ford sat in a cubicle of the gent’s toilets folding raffle tickets ready for the draw. Skittle weekends and jumble sales were the other main fundraisers. The club’s first entry was The Rainmakers. As a theme, it proved relatively successful. On the stage, this new club took fourth place, an unexpected success against the more established clubs.
The club was one of the first to have female members and perhaps because of that has continued to include many female members, with smaller numbers of male members coming and going over the years. In 1977, the Wellworthy title was dropped and the club became the Renegades CC, which it remains to this day.
Fast forward 55 years and today the club continues to work hard towards being one of the most ambitious clubs in Bridgwater. The club strives for enjoyment and good spirit in all it achieves and has worked hard to create a diligent work ethic amongst its members. No doubt the strength in increased male and female members has supported the club in its increasing success over the last decade. The club now averages approximately 50 members each year and this ranges from 14 years to 65 years. Within a four year window, the club increased their procession carnival result from 13th to 4th place! A stand out moment for the club was the success of their 2017 entry Maori-Aotearoa. In 2017, they achieved the once unimaginable accolade of winning The White Hart Cup for first place in the annual Bridgwater Carnival concert. The feeling on this night will go down in history and confirmed that if you work hard and play fair, good things will happen.
The club is based at Vino’s Ale & Wine Tavern, High Street, Bridgwater.