This year's Trust Thamesmead Summer Festival is set to be a great community, family, fun day.
The T Factor finals, featuring six Thamesmead residents, will be taking place on the main stage this year, hoping they will go on to win the annual Trust Thamesmead talent contest; not only to support the headline act but also to win a recording session at Abbey Music Studios.
Also on the main stage will be a Flamenco and African band and tribute acts including High Skool Musicool, Take That 2 and The Great Pretender with Brian Rock and the HRH Band. And if that wasn't enough, Laura White from ITV1's The X Factor will also be performing.
But carrying on with the community feel… This year Trust Thamesmead will have its own marquee and will be demonstrating that we don't just do festivals! Trust Chief Executive Mick Hayes said: “The festival gives us a fantastic opportunity to show everyone the exciting multi-million pound projects which we will be bringing to Thamesmead in the next couple of years. Visitors will also be able to discover for themselves the wide range of services on offer to Thamesmead residents from our offices in the town centre and our many community buildings.”
Trust Thamesmead has, for the last six months, been consulting with members of a Community Forum made up of Thamesmead residents and members of community groups so they could have their say in who and what they would like to see, so for the first time, we really can say the people of Thamesmead have some kind of ownership over the event
There will also be thirty community groups and local service providers running stalls on the day, raising money for their groups and engaging with residents to increase community involvement, interest and support. Groups attending include: the 5th Abbey Wood Rainbows and Brownies, Thamesmead Town and Abbey Wood Royal British Legion, Thamesmead Surfers, JMF Support Group, Greenmead Over 50s, Greenwich Teaching PCT, the Bexley African Caribbean Community Association, 2nd Thamesmead Scouts, Bexley and Greenwich Primary Dental Care Service, Advocacy for Older People in Greenwich, Friends of Thamesmead Parks, 1st Thamesmead Brownies, African Health for Empowerment, Bridging the Gap South East and the 6th Abbey Wood Rainbows.
Sandy White, Leader of the 5th Abbey Wood Rainbows and Brownies who meet at Arnott Community Centre said: “We really look forward to the Trust Thamesmead Summer Festival; this year the girls will be taking part in the parade and are planning to make as much noise as possible. Most of the girls will stay on for the event, spending the day with family and friends and having fun. It also a good opportunity for us to raise some much needed funds.”
Six year old Rainbow Tabitha Sanders said: "I love the festival because I can take part in the parade, go on the bouncy castles with my friends and help out on our stall."
Eddie Gavin of Thamesmead Town and Abbey Wood Royal British Legion said: “We are always delighted to receive an invitation from Trust Thamesmead to their Summer Festival. It is by far the best way we have of engaging with such a large number of local residents for recruiting new members and explaining how the funds of the Poppy Appeal are spent. It really is community event that is a pleasure to be involved in.”
Olive Tuck, a member of the over 50s group, Thamesmead Surfers said: “Thamesmead Surfers has been going for two years and is open to both men and women aged 50+. We hold classes in IT, crafts and have a reading group. We also have social get togethers and outings, so the Thamesmead festival is not only a very useful way of raising funds, but a means of meeting other people and groups in the community and sharing information. It is also a fun day for our group; we are very much looking forward to it.”
Lin Pettitt, Group Scout Leader, 2nd Thamesmead Scout Group said: “The festival is a great community event with a special meaning to us at the 2nd Thamesmead Scout Group as it enables us to meet others in and around Thamesmead, to promote our group and Scouting in general and of course to try and raise important funds to subsidise our group. Trust Thamesmead must be thanked for all the hard work they put into organising this event every year.”
And nine local community groups will be performing on the Activity Zone's community platform: Theatre Street, Thamesmead Judo Club, Dorothy Ng's Tai Chi group, Hawkins School of Irish Dance, Abbey Wood and Thamesmead Twirlers, Tan Gun Tae Kwan Do, Thamesmead School of Dance and Myztikal.
Sandra Scholes, Leader of the Twirlers said: “The Trust Thamesmead Summer Festival gives us a chance to show our skills and abilities in baton twirling, to demonstrate our team spirit and meet with other groups. All of our members are local children who take pride in representing their community. We love nothing more than seeing smiles on faces and encouraging others to take part in this affordable sport.”
If you don't go away having a fun filled day, having learned more about your community, we'll eat our sun-hats!