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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.”

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.

Dartford Saint George Day 2017

The annual Saint George’s Day Parade and celebrations took place in Dartford on Friday April 21. 500 Children from 10 local schools took part in the event which was organised by Cohesion Plus in partnership with Kent Equality Cohesion Council supported by Dartford Borough Council 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 in Dartford to celebrate this important day.

Before the procession started there was entertainment on the High Street with performances by the West Hill Morris, Premier Brass Band, Big Fish Arts and the Bollywood Brass Band which attracted a large crowd.

The Schools gathered outside the Civic Centre where the parade led by Saint George himself started. Along with the schools the parade also featured special guests the Mayor of Dartford, Cllr Burrell and Gareth Johnson MP as well as performances by the Brass Bands, Four by Four Dhol Drummers, Stilt Walkers and comedy medieval jesters and Shakespearian actors.

The parade climaxed in Central Park by the Band Stand where the 500 school children sang Happy 91st Birthday to HM The Queen before watching a short programme of entertainment which climaxed with the Premier Brass Band playing Land of Hope of Glory and the National Anthem.

Gurvinder Sandher the Artistic Director of Cohesion Plus who led on the organisation of the celebrations commented “I am proud of what we were able to achieve working in partnership with Dartford Borough Council and local schools. There was a great vibe in the town centre and we were able to show how the arts can play a positive role in bringing communities together to celebrate events like Saint George’s Day. I am also very grateful to Same Sky Arts our principal artistic partners and LV21 for their excellent work on the evaluation which captured the positive energy of the members of the public in attendance.”

Saint George’s Day 2rd April 2015

Saint George’s Day Celebrations Some of the Biggest to Date

Some of the biggest celebrations in England for Saint George’s Day took place in Gravesham and Dartford on April 23rd. 30 local schools and some 1600 children took part in parades to mark the national day for England alongside a host of entertainers, community groups and members of the public.

Entertainment included the Premier Brass Band, Bollywood Brass Band, West Hill Morris Dance Troupe, Four by Four Dhol Drummers, a Town Crier, a Saint George in full armor, Stilt Walkers and Medieval Court Jesters.

The celebrations commenced in Gravesham in the morning where the streets were filled with members of the public waving the flags of Saint George, who with enthusiasm supported first the entertainment in the town centre and then the schools parade as it marched through. The celebrations climaxed on Community Square where further performances took place before the audience was addressed by the Mayor of Gravesham Cllr John Caller before the flags of Saint George were raised. 

St Georges Day 154 Dartford

The programme then moved onto Dartford where large crowds gathered at One Bell Corner to see performances by Premier Brass, Bollywood Brass and West Hill Morris. For the first time the parade started outside the Civic Centre in Dartford before heading into the Town Centre, stopping briefly at the War Memorial where flags of Saint George were raised by the Mayor of Dartford Cllr Avtar Sandhu MBE. The celebrations climaxed at the Bandstand in Central Park with a rousing rendition of “Land of Hope and Glory” by the Premier Brass Band.

Gurvinder Sandher the Artistic Director of Cohesion Plus commented ““I would like to thank all the artists and schools who took part. This was an excellent example of how the arts can be used to bring communities together and celebrate our shared values which makes us the nation that we are. The numbers of people in attendance surprised me and underlined the importance of the arts as a tool to bring people together. My ambition is to organise similar events in other parts of Kent starting next year. Finally I am very grateful for the support provided by Gravesham and Dartford Borough Council’s and Arts Council England both in the planning and delivery of the celebrations.”