Picnic in the park provides food for thought

20th August 2019

More than 100 people got together for an enormous picnic in the park in Speedwell, Bristol recently.

The family event was organised by Sovereign’s Smiles Matter action group, in partnership with LinkAge - an older people’s charity - Children’s Scrapstore, Speedwell Children’s Centre and Meadow Vale Community Association, and was also attended by local police and councillors.

Free food, hula-hooping action and crafting creativity brought dozens of local families out of their homes, but serious topics of conversation also bound them together.

Avon & Somerset Police Neighbourhood Beat Manager, Clare Heard, said: “It’s great to see this park being used for exactly what it was designed for. Laughter and fun aside, Speedwell has recently been a target of knife crime and arson and this event provided an opportunity for local residents to air their concerns and share ideas about projects that could improve community life.”

Jessica Dewhurst, Sovereign Community Development Officer, added: “Smiles Matter action group was established in March 2018 with the aim of making Speedwell a better place for children and families to grow. Following the picnic, a community meeting was also held between residents and partners to start shaping new projects for the area and creating plans to take them forward. It’s this kind of initiative that really helps our neighbourhoods to flourish.”