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Dartford celebrates Saint George’s Day with arts and colour!

Dartford played host to some of the largest Saint George’s Day celebrations on Tuesday 23rd April. Around 550 children from 9 local schools participated in the annual parade along with hundreds of spectators. The celebrations were organised in partnership by Cohesion Plus and Kent Equality Cohesion Council supported by Dartford Borough Council in what were some of the biggest celebrations taking place in England.

Dartford High Street was abuzz with activity with a number of performances on One Bell Corner including West Hill Morris, Premier Brass Band, DDFK Brass Band, Big Fish and Folkin Fusion Drumming Collective as well as Saint George themed Stilt Walkers.

The Schools began the parade from the Civic Centre and were led by North Kent resident Russell Palmer as Saint George himself. Special guests included the Mayor of Dartford Cllr David Mote and Council Leader Cllr Jeremy Kite MBE. The parade went through the Orchard Shopping Centre and onto the High Street where they were joined by a large scale dragon and hundreds of local residents. The parade stopped briefly at Memorial Gardens where the flag of Saint George was raised before moving on to Central Park where there followed a programme of entertainment which climaxed with the National Anthem.

Gurvinder Sandher, the Artistic Director for Cohesion Plus commented “It was great to see so many people come out and support the Saint George’s Day celebrations. We have always felt that the arts can have a positive impact when it comes to community cohesion and to see so many people from different faiths and backgrounds come together to celebrate the patron saint of England makes us very proud as an organisation. We very much value the ongoing supported by our partners in Dartford and feel that other parts of the country can learn about what we doing when it comes to Saint George’s Day.”

Sun shines on St George’s Day celebrations in Gravesham

Some of the biggest celebrations in England to commemorate Saint George’s Day took place in Gravesham on Tuesday April 23rd. 500 Children from 13 local schools took part in the event which was organised by Cohesion Plus in partnership with Kent Equality Cohesion Council supported by Gravesham Borough Council and Arts Council England. The celebrations aim to celebrate the patron Saint of England and bring together the diverse communities of the borough.

Celebrations began in Gravesend Town Centre with performances from Hartley Morris Men, Premier Brass Band, DDFK Brass Band, Folkin Fusion Drumming Collective, Saint George themed stilt walkers who entertained large crowds and a large scale mobile Dragon.

The highlight of the celebrations was the schools parade which was led by Saint George enacted by Gravesham resident Russel Palmer. They were followed by the Mayor of Gravesham Cllr David Hurley and local dignitaries and Deputy Lord Lieutenants of Kent, Dr. Bhargwara Vasudaven.

The parade made its way from Community Square and continued up Windmill Street eventually making its way through the Thamesgate Shopping Centre arriving back on Community Square. Throughout the parade members of the public waved their flags of Saint George and encouraged the children as the parade went by. Once the parade climaxed on Community Square the 500 school children sang Happy Birthday to HM The Queen to celebrate her 93rd birthday before the flags of Saint George were raised on Community Square.

Gurvinder Sandher, Artistic Director for Cohesion Plus commented “The arts are a great way of bringing communities together and celebrating our shared values. The Saint George’s Day celebrations in Gravesham are a great testament to this. I was especially pleased with the diverse range of artists and communities that took part further underlining the ethos and mission of our organisation. We strive to promote a cohesive and integrated society in Kent and anyone who attended the celebrations would have seen this in action.”

St Georges Day 23rd April

Preparations are now at an advanced stage for some of the biggest Saint George’s celebrations in the South East taking place in Gravesham and Dartford on Saint George’s Day itself Tuesday April 23rd. This year 22 local schools across the 2 boroughs have been taking part in arts workshops run by arts organisation Same Sky in the lead up to the parade and will display what they have made during the parade itself. The ethos of the event is to celebrate diverse England in the context of 2019 and to educate young people about Saint George the patron Saint of England.

Gurvinder Sandher the Artistic Director of Cohesion Plus commented “At a time of great division in our country I believe that it is important that we celebrate events like Saint George’s Day as there is more that bind us together as communities than divides us. I am very proud of what we have achieved over the last 10 years in Gravesham and Dartford with the celebrations and I hope like previous years that the local community will come out and wave the flag of Saint George with pride. The young people from Gravesham and Dartford who will participate in the parade have been working very hard over the past few months in preparation and this is a great example of how the arts can be used to bring people together.”

The celebrations in Gravesham will take place between 10am and 11.30am and in Dartford from 12.30pm to 2.30pm. Entertainment including Big Fish Brass Band, DDFK and Premier Brass Bands, West Hill Morris, Hartley Morris Men, Saint George’s themed Stilt Walkers, a Saint George in full armor and a large scale dragon will feature.

The annual celebrations are organised by Cohesion Plus in partnership Kent Equality Cohesion Council, supported by Gravesham Borough Council, Dartford Borough Council and Arts Council England.

Dartford comes together for Saint George’s Day

Dartford comes together for Saint George’s Day

Dartford played host to one of its largest Saint George’s Day celebrations to date on Monday April 23 where 500 children from 8 local schools took part along with hundreds of local residents.

The High Street was abuzz with activity with a number of performances on One Bell Corner including West Hill Morris, Premier Brass Band, Brass Volcanoes and Folkin Fusion Drumming Collective.

The Schools began the parade from the Civic Centre and were led by North Kent resident Russell Palmer as Saint George himself. Special guests included the Mayor of Dartford Cllr Rosanna Currans and Council Leader Cllr Jeremy Kite MBE. The parade went through the Orchard Shopping Centre and onto the High Street where they were joined by a large scale dragon and hundreds of local residents who then followed the parade to its climax in Central Park.

There, some 500 school children sang Happy 92nd Birthday to HM The Queen before watching a short programme of entertainment which climaxed with the Premier Brass Band and the Folkin Fusion Drumming Collective playing Land of Hope of Glory and the National Anthem.

Gurvinder Sandher the Artistic Director of Cohesion Plus commented “I am very lucky to be in the position to work with organisations like Dartford Borough Council who share my vision of using events like Saint George’s Day as means of bringing communities together to celebrate shared values and what it means to be a citizen in Dartford in 2018. I strongly believe that the arts are an excellent way of breaking down barriers and bringing communities together and the Dartford Saint George’s Day celebrations are testament to that.”

The celebrations were organised in partnership by Cohesion Plus and Kent Equality Cohesion Council supported by Dartford Borough Council and Arts Council England in what were some of the biggest celebrations taking place in England. The aim of the event was to celebrate the patron Saint of England and bring together the diverse communities of the borough to celebrate this national day.

The arts brings communities together for Saint George’s Day

The arts brings communities together for Saint George’s Day

Some of the biggest celebrations in England to commemorate Saint George’s Day took place in Gravesham on Monday April 23rd. 600 Children from 14 local schools took part in the event which was organised by Cohesion Plus in partnership with Kent Equality Cohesion Council supported by Gravesham Borough Council. The aim of the event was to celebrate the patron Saint of England and bring together the diverse communities in a large scale celebration.

The day kicked off with celebrations in Gravesend Town Centre with performances from Brass Volcanoes, Premier Brass Band and Saint George themed stilt walkers who entertained large crowds.

The highlight of the celebrations was the schools parade which was led by Saint George enacted by Gravesham resident Russel Palmer who was followed by a large scale dragon. They were followed by the Mayor of Gravesham Harold Craske and local dignitaries and partners including the Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Scott and Deputy Lord Lieutenants of Kent, Dr. Bhargwara Vasudaven and Rosemary Dymond.

The 14 school paraded behind accompanied by Premier Brass, Brass Volcanoes, Folkin Fusion Drumming Collective, Stilt Walkers and artistic partners LV21 and Same Sky.

The Parade went up the High Street into King Street, through Saint George’s Shopping Centre and then headed back through town before finishing on Community Square. Throughout the parade members of the public waved their flags of Saint George and encouraged the children as the parade went by.

Once the parade climaxed on Community Square the 600 school children sang Happy Birthday to HM The Queen to celebrate her 92nd birthday. The festivities climaxed with a special rendition of Land of Hope and Glory performed by Premier Brass Band and the Folkin Fusion Drumming Collective before the flag of Saint George was raised high above the Community Square as the national anthem was played by the Borough Band.

Gurvinder Sandher Artistic Director of Cohesion Plus commented “I am humbled by the positive response we received today not only from the participants but also from our partners and members of the public. So many people came to congratulate me on the successful celebrations. I passionately believe that events like Saint George’s Day should be celebrated as a means of bringing communities together. If anyone wonders about the benefit of events like Saint George’s Day they only had to be in Gravesham this morning to see.”