Janet Arendse

Janet Arendse was born in 1964 in Clanwilliam. She describes the town as having been a lovely place.

Janet Arendse feels that Clanwilliam has changed drastically over time, and used to be a place where she could walk freely. She has eight children, the second eldest being Nicole Arendse, who is well-known in the town for her steel band and involvement with the Lantern Parade. Janet Arendse is one of the daughters of Appie April, who was also greatly involved with the community and is remembered for it.

Janet Arendse was born in 1964 in Clanwilliam and grew up in the town. In 1981 her family moved to Tulbagh and she went to the children’s home, where she attended school until Standard 9. She finished school in Ceres. Janet says that Clanwilliam was a lovely place where people could walk around freely – not like today. She says it has changed over time. She has eight children, the second eldest being Nicole Arendse, or Sussie, who everyone knows for her involvement with the Lantern Festival. Janet’s father is Appie April, also a well-known man in Clanwilliam and very involved with the Lantern Festival when it first started. She says its is a great experience, and people come from as far as Cape Town to join. Her father started Eland’s Projek and then the Lantern Festival band, which has since ended. Sussie, however, now runs the steel band.


My name is Janet Arendse, I’m married Arendse, but was born in April. I was born in Clanwilliam, the 5th of September 1964.

(inaudible 00:25)

I grew up in Clanwilliam, then we moved in around 1988, no, ’81, my pa and them moved to Tulbagh. My pa applied to the children’s, Steinthal Children’s Home. I went to school there, Standard 7, and then I went to Ceres, Fred Gaum. I finished my school career there. And…

How was it in those years?

Those years were very nice in Clanwilliam, I mean, you could walk wherever you wanted to, not like now. You could walk around freely in Clanwilliam. But as time passed, everything changed. And I’m married to Cola Michael Arendse from Manenberg. I have eight children, the oldest is Adrian, and the second oldest is Sussie, everyone knows Sussie as Nicole. I don’t have to expand on the other children.

Okay. Tell us who your mother and father were.

My father was Appie April and my mother was Rosetta Crossny (?? 01:45), then she married Uncle Appie and became April.

Tell us about your grandma and them. Their backgrounds.

My grandpa was Piet April, he was born at Doringbos, and my grandma was Janetta April, she was born in Leliefontein in the Northern Cape.

Your grandpa and grandma told many stories. Can you remember one or two?

I can’t really remember. As I told you, my sister will be able to tell you more about my grandma.

Okay, but tell us what you know.

I don’t know many stories about my grandpa, about their side.

Tell us about the Lantern Festival.

The Lantern Festival is now already, how many years, they’ve now been going for 17 years, and my father was, let’s say the, he was in control of many things at the Lantern Festival, because every year, it was at the school, but then there was, I don’t know what problems, the, yes, and then they upgraded the track, then they couldn’t have the Lantern Festival there any more, they held it in Park Street, in the park.

Describe how you see the Lantern Festival. How it is for you.

It’s very pleasant, because people come from the Cape, there are many Capetonians who come to the Lantern Festival.

And how can it be improved, or…?

It can be improved if it could only have the right place, like the park, then many people can attend.

Okay. Are there many children there?

Yes, there are many children involved.

So are you going again this year?

Yes, if the Lord spares me I’ll go again this year.

Tell us how your father was involved.

My father was involved with the band, with the orchestra. Look, it was the Eland Project at first.

Was the Eland Project at first.

But that ended and then my father founded it, the Lantern Festival, founded the orchestra, band.

Does the orchestra still exist?

No, the orchestra doesn’t exist any more, but Sussie’s steel band, I don’t know whether you’ve heard them playing, she now has the steel band.


There are many secondary school children and primary school children who are now running the steel band.

Janet Arendse is in 1964 op Clanwilliam gebore. Sy sê die dorp was ’n pragtige plek.

Janet voel Clanwilliam het met die jare geweldig verander. Dit was voorheen ’n plek waar ’n mens vrylik kon rondloop. Sy het agt kinders. Die tweede oudste is Nicole Arendse, wat op die dorp bekend is vir haar staalorkes en haar betrokkenheid by die Lanternfees. Janet is een van Appie April se dogters. Almal onthou hom vir sy betrokkenheid by die gemeenskap.

Janet Arendse is in 1964 op Clanwilliam gebore en het op die dorp grootgeword. In 1981 het haar familie na Tulbagh verhuis. Sy het in die kinderhuis gewoon tot en met standerd 9. Sy het haar skoolloopbaan op Ceres voltooi. Janet sê Clanwilliam was ’n lekker plek waar mense vrylik kon rondloop – nie soos vandag nie. Sy sê die dorp het met die jare verander. Sy het agt kinders. Die tweede oudste is Nicole Arendse, of Sussie, wat aan almal bekend is omdat sy by die Lanternfees betrokke is. Janet se pa is Appie April, ook ’n bekende op Clanwilliam. Hy was baie betrokke toe die Lanternfees begin het. Sy sê dis ’n wonderlike ondervinding en mense kom van so ver as Kaapstad af om daaraan deel te neem. Haar pa het die Eland-projek begin en toe die Lanternfeesorkes, wat intussen doodgeloop het. Sussie is tans in beheer van die staalorkes.


My naam is Janet Arendse, ek is getroud Arendse, maar is gebore April. Ek is in Clanwilliam gebore, die vyfde September 1964.

(onhoorbaar 00:25)

Ek het grootgeword in Clanwilliam, toe trek ons hier, neëntien ag-en-, nee, een-en-tagtig, toe trek my pa-hulle Tulbagh toe. Toe’t my pa aansoek gedoen aan die kinder, Sental (?? 00:38) Kinderhuis. Ek het daar skoolgegaan, standerd sewe en toe gaan ek na Ceres toe, Fred Gaum, maak ek my skoolloopbaan daar klaar. En …

Hoe was dit in daai jare?

Daai jare was baie lekker in Clanwilliam, ek meen, jy kan rondloop soos jy wil, maar nie soos nou nie. Jy kan vryelik rondgeloop het in Clanwilliam. Maar soos die tyd nou aangeloop het, het alles verander. En, ek is getroud met Cola Michael Arendse van Manenberg, ek het ag kinders, waarvan die oudste is Adrian, en die tweede oudste is Sussie, almal ken vir Sussie as Nicole. Ek hoef nie uit te brei oor die ander kinders nie.

Oukei. Vertel vir ons wie was Antie se ma en pa.

My pa was Appie April en my ma was Rosetta Crossny (?? 01:45), toe’s sy getroud met oom Appie mos nou, April.

Vertel vir ons Antie se Ouma-hulle se agtergrond.

My oupa was, my oupa was Piet April, hy’s gebore in Doringbos en my ouma was Janetta April, sy was gebore in Leliefontein in die Noord-Kaap.

Antie se oupa en ouma het baie stories vertel. Kan Antie een of twee onthou?

Ek kan nie eintlik onthou nie. Soos ek vir jou gesê het, my suster sal nou baie meer kan uitbrei oor my ouma.

Oukei, maar dié wat Antie nou weet, vertel vir ons.

Ek ken nie baie stories van my oupa nie, van hulle kant af nie.

Vertel vir ons, oukei, vertel vir ons van die Liggiefees (onhoorbaar 02:36).

Die Liggiefees is al hoeveel jaar, hulle is nou al sewentien jaar wat hulle aankom, en my pa was, sê maar die, hy was baie aan bewind gewees by die Liggiefees, want elke jaar dan is dit mos by die skool gewees, maar toe’s daar nou ek weet nie wat, probleme, die, ja, en toe het hulle mos die baan opgegradeer, toe kan hulle nie meer die Liggiefees daar hou nie, toe hou hulle dit in Parkstraat, in die park.

Beskryf vir ons hoe Antie die Liggiefees sien. Hoe dit vir Antie is.

Dis vir my baie aangenaam, want die mense kom tot uit die Kaap uit, daar’s baie Kapenaars wat na die Liggiefees toe kom.

En … hoe kan dit nog verbeter word, of …?

Dit kan verbeter raak as dit net ’n, regte plek het, soos die park, dan kan daar baie mense kom.

Oukei. Is daar baie kinders daar?

Ja, daar’s baie kinders betrokke by.

So, gaan Antie weer dié jaar?

Ja, as die Here my uitspaar, gaan ek weer dié jaar.

Vertel vir ons hoe Antie se pa betrokke gewees het.

My pa was betrokke by die band, by die orkes. Kyk, dit was mos eers die Eland-projek gewees.

Uhm. Was eers die Eland-projek gewees.

Maar dit is nou tot niet gegaan en toe’t my pa dit gestig, die Liggiefees, die orkes, band gestig.

Is die orkes nog altyd aan die gang?

Nee, die orkes is nie meer aan die gang nie, maar Sussie se steel band, ek weet nie of jy hulle al gehoor speel het nie, sy’t mos nou die steel band.


Dis ’n klomp hoërskoolkinders en laerskoolkinders wat nou die steel band behartig.