The Feast Effect ~ Why Places Matter

Thursday, 11 July 2013

I was reading this article recently about why places and communities matter. It got me thinking about my local area...

I've lived in my part of south London for nearly 16 years. In that time things have changed quite a bit. New shops and business have established themselves, others have come and gone. A new school has opened. Bus frequencies have improved. Road humps and new trees have appeared in our street. The station has been repainted (several times), more expensive cars have crept into the residential streets...

But in all this time I never felt that the atmosphere had changed, that people were feeling differently about the area or that there was any real sense of community which I could be part of.

Until West Norwood Feast started in 2011.


Now, on the first Sunday of every month from April to December, people in our area come together around the high street area to celebrate the local community and share food, entertainment, arts, crafts and local produce.


Here's a quick tour of July's Feast last weekend...



Listening to some music...


While enjoying some lunch...





Pottering amongst the stalls...



Getting arty at Portico...


Such fine weather, the ideal day in fact!




And back again for a dessert course...






The wonderful thing I've noticed over the last few years is that the sense of local community has been stirred. For me Feast sparked this and has done enormous things for our area.

Places do matter. People are happier when they feel they belong and are part of something bigger. They want to join in, interact and communicate more with each other.

A few more sociable coffee shops have opened. The Portico Gallery has been developed and a range of courses such as pottery, sewing and yoga have started running there. We now have the Blackbird Bakery. New businesses are popping up in response to the new vibe. People are beginning to see the area in a different light, somewhere with life and opportunities. It's really a lovely thing to see happening.

So thank you Feast, and everyone who works so hard to bring us this great day every month. It's now stretching way beyond the market and is encouraging a whole new feeling to West Norwood. Thank you for breathing life back into our community!


Do you have any regular events where you live which help to bring local people together and are changing the feel of the area?


No comments:

Post a Comment