2017 Plaistow Festival – a successful pilot

ThePlaistow Summer Market Place Festival was held in Plaistow Park on Saturday 22nd July 2017 and attended by around 1900 people. The usual Plaistow Youth Market was matched by three further elements – a collection of community information and activity stalls, a performance stage showcasing local talent, and a range of fun activities including Sumo Suits and pedal carts in the centre of the park.

The event was organised and funded jointly by Plaistow South Big Local and LBN Plaistow Community Neighbourhood, with further contributions from Park Lives, West Ham United Foundation, and Tesco.

Community stalls included health, social care and employment information and support, recycling and fly-tipping advice, the Green Gym (TCV), REIN and VYG youth services, Friends of Queens Market coconut shy, face-painting and henna, local sports and activity providers, and, of course, Plaistow Community Neighbourhood.

The packed performance schedule was compered and tied together by singer-guitarist Zac Vincent, performing pop and rock songs from the 60s to the present day. Performers included traditionally-costumed Lithuanian dance troupe Versme which meets at the Mix, powerful young singer Charlotte (a former Tollgate Primary School pupil), Quadrille dancers from Newham African Caribbean Centre, and young musicians from Lister School, UCKG’s Victory Youth Group, and The Mix Youth Centre. There was also a touch of drama and community choir singing from Plaistow-based Applecart Arts and two “flash Zumba” sessions led by SalsaPam’s Cristina – rapidly turned into Zumberella by the onset of rain!

The event incorporated this year’s PSBL “Bloomin’ Plaistow” competition awards, an exhibition of PSBL’s projects, and an arts activities tent also organised by PSBL.
Visitors to the event included the Mayor of Newham and 6 local Councillors, along with an engine and crew from Plaistow Fire Station!

Building on the success of this first venture, we are glad to say that we went on to organise a week-long “Plaistow Festival” for 2018 with a bigger event finale in the park on 23rd June 2018. Read about it here.