Community News

Celebrating community at West Hendon Summer Solstice Festival

Sara Borchard of West Hendon Arts and Culture Society on the recent community event

A group of adults and children taking part in an arts activity around at a table at the West Hendon summer solstice festival
Local residents get creative at the West Hendon Summer Solstice Festival – (Credit – West Hendon Arts and Culture Society)

The West Hendon Arts and Culture Society (WHACS) hosted a Summer Solstice Festival for local residents last week.

This vibrant community event took place on Wednesday 21st June 2023 from 3pm-8pm on Damsel Walk by West Hendon Broadway.

The event provided fun for all, whilst showing the opportunities for bringing the public space to life with activities. It offered a fantastic mix of local and professional performers including vintage pop trio the glamourous London Belles, bohofolk singer-songwriter PandorasDiary, and Jada Funk Collective performing 70s and ‘80s hits.

A Chinese ribbon dance and Indian classical music helped transport festival goers around the world while Broadfields Primary School students joined the celebrations with a flowing dance and the BEAT Jazz Ensemble and Barnet Education Arts Trust shared jazz hits with flare.

A Chinese ribbon dance at the West Hendon Summer Solstice festival
A Chinese ribbon dance – (Credit – West Hendon Arts and Culture Society)

Offstage, local children enjoyed the chance to make and create at an art workshop with a Summer Solstice theme while balloon modelling artists brought smiles to many faces with their colourful creations.

The African Drumming workshop introduced those of all ages to drumming, adding to the day’s musical theme. The event also featured in the London Festival of Architecture programme for 2023, the theme of which is ‘In Common’. This month-long celebration of architecture and city-making aims to open up discussions around architecture, environment and city spaces.

The Summer Solstice Festival included an interactive architecture and design workshop led by Middlesex University on the theme of interiors and a student exhibition of work on ways in which local communities can re-engage following the Covid-19 pandemic and design can re-energise high streets.

With tantalising street food and lots of useful information from community stalls there was something for everyone throughout the afternoon and evening festivities.

Naomi Stanford, a member of WHACS said: “The Summer Solstice Festival showed the possibilities for exciting community events in West Hendon. We look forward to sharing more opportunities to come together as a community.”

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