The sun shone brightly today as residents from the neighbourhood surrounding Baker Street in Reading joined forces for The Big Lunch, a national campaign aimed at bringing our communities closer together.
Families and households brought food and drink to share, as The Baker Street “Big Lunch” converged on the junction of Baker Street and Carey Street outside The Oasis Community Centre. Bright bunting festooned the street, as did some rather ingenious flowers fashioned from recycled plastic carrier bags. Musicians from Carey Baptist Church were on hand to bring melodies to the masses as over two hundred people in total joined in the fun and frolics out in the open air.
Speaking whilst the festivities were in full swing, Baker Street Area Neighbourhood Association (BSANA) Chairperson Karen Rowlands said: “This is our second year doing The Big Lunch and it is even bigger and better than before. We’ve face painting, bottle-cap art sessions, two bouncy castles for the kids, mehndi hand painting, and a keg of ale has once again been donated by our local pub, The Horse and Jockey; plus we’ve a quiz and music and some zumba sessions too.” She added: “This is all about bringing our community together. We are also promoting our free window boxes which are available to households in our neighbourhood, plus people can come to BSANA for financial advice on help available for transforming their front garden if they live in the Baker Street area. We will also be hosting our Big Clean-Up on 28 and 29 June to give our community a good clean and dispose of all the flytipping and trash in the area.”
Reading Borough Council’s Streetcare team, assisted by Teresa Colliass of Oxford Road Neighbourhood Action Group, were on hand during the day to provide practical help and advice on recycling and household waste.
Carey Baptist Church Evangelist Jamie Cater, who was also at the event said: “We’re really glad to be involved in this and in our community too. It enables us to get to know our community through events such as this and through our work at The Oasis. The cultural diversity of our neighbourhood is vast and we hope The Oasis can be a place where our community from all cultures and diversities can come together.”
To find out more about the Baker Street Area Neighbourhood Association (BSANA) community group, their aims and action plan to improve community life in their neighbourhood, visit their website at www.bsana.org. The Association are also active on Facebook and have a page called BSANA-the-Baker-Street-Area-Neighbourhood-Association.