Lewisham People’s Day success in the sun at Catford

Flags at Lewisham People's Day. Photo by Olivia

On one of the hottest days of the year thousands of people flocked to south London for Lewisham People’s Day, at Mountsfield Park in Catford on Saturday, where there was music, food and activities to enjoy.

Now in its 26th year, the aim of Lewisham People’s Day is to celebrate the local community and provide an entertaining day out for people and visitors. This Saturday was no exception.

The atmosphere in the park was generally positive and upbeat, with large numbers of families attending.

There were many stalls selling a wide variety of goods and food, including jewellery, secondhand clothes and homemade cakes. Several different stages hosted a variety of music that everyone could enjoy including: rock, reggae, jazz and hip-hop.

The main stage attracted people of all ages to a “Big Dance”, as well as a performance by the legendary band The Beat, who promoted a simple message of love and unity.

The Bonkersfest Bandstand was supported by the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust, who put together a line-up which aimed to celebrate culture and creativity. Reggae, rock and ska produced by bands including, Jazzman John, and Black Star, could be heard booming out from the bandstand to an audience of mainly adults.

Dance event Spitfire Bounce enticed many adults to revisit their youth by dancing and jiving to jazz and swing, leading to happy faces all around and much handclapping.

The area named Rocklands was a creative hub for younger people, with local bands The Real Bad Habits, and Shiva, from New Cross, winning over the crowd. The Dance for Life stage provided a huge variety of acts and music, ranging from local rapper Gifted K to belly dancing and a Bollywood performance.

If music wasn’t your thing, there was plenty more on offer. Free arts materials were provided and some amazing pieces of art were produced, including many “I Love Lewisham” slogans.

There seemed to be something for everyone, including sports fans (free boxing and football tasters were provided by Millwall Football Club). Lewisham Multi-Sports had a presence, providing a mini football arena for young children.

A variety of food was available but the Jerk chicken wrap proved to be the favourite with locals. Its delicious aroma was the enduring smell of the day.

By Tom Hilton

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