I am sure that the Southmead Festival is just as important to you as it is to me-a wonderful day of welcoming the community (and beyond) to get together and enjoy everything that Southmead has to offer. Once again the Southmead Development Trust have donated the Greenway Centre at no cost and have done so since 2012. (Thank you).
However, at the end of last year the Festival committee found themselves in a very difficult position as we had no organiser and the number of residents on the committee had dwindled considerably. Filton festival costs around £40,000.00 to put on and they charge for entry. Our festival is free of charge and we are committed to this as it’s a community festival.
Although it is only one day it takes a tremendous amount of work to organise with over 130 organisations plus individuals to contact. This requires a project manager and up to 4 additional workers to plan and organise the day.
With this in mind the Festival committee decided last November to take a vote on how to proceed for this year’s festival. We desperately wanted there to still be a festival but were unable to do this ourselves. The committee voted to ask the Southmead Development Trust to host this year in a way as close as possible to previous festivals.
The Southmead Development Trust and the Southmead Community Association have worked with the festival committee for many years but unfortunately due to capacity the Southmead Community Association are unable to organise the dance performance area this year so the Southmead Development Trust have taken over this role. This is possibly one of my favourite areas as the groups are brilliant and it showcases all the talent in Southmead.
Sadly, due to Council cuts, we no longer have help from Council staff so we are really desperate for more residents to be involved in the festival.
The committee will reconvene in September to discuss how the day went and also, more importantly, what will happen going forwards. The Southmead Development Trust were asked to organise this year’s event as a temporary measure to give the committee a bit of breathing space. I feel that it is really important that we still have a festival and many residents will not be aware of how much hard work and dedication it takes especially from volunteers.
The sunshine has been ordered and we hope you have a great day.
Kind regards from Deana Perry,
Chair of the Southmead Festival.