Street party brings young and old together

Published on: 26 Aug 2016

GETTING to know your neighbours in this day and age is not the easiest of feats but for residents living in one Downend street it was quite simply a piece of cake.
For the young and old of Woodhall Close were brought together by food and drink at a summer street party.
It was organised in a bid to foster community spirit and it certainly did the trick - with residents already asking when the next party will take place.
Resident Nicolette Usher said: "We have a real mix of residents on the street, the oldest moving into the Close when the houses were first built in the 1950s, to our newest baby, born just eight weeks ago. There are a number families with younger children who often socialise and play together but we recognised that there are many people living in the 25 houses whom we’ve not met or only see to wave a hello.
"Spurned on by the street parties being held in honour of the Queen’s birthday, the idea to hold a street party and get to meet all the neighbours and have some fun together was born."
A core team of residents initially spoke to other householders to see if they would be interested in taking part and the response was overwhelming positive.
The only problem organisers encountered was the £154 charge asked by South Gloucestershire Council to officially close the road.
"The organising team thought this would mean that residents would have to pay to attend which is something we really wanted to avoid," said Nicolette.
"In the end, residents agreed to closing the street and just informing the local police rather than going ahead with the application."
Despite this hiccup, the event, on Saturday July 30, went swimmingly with the fun running from mid-afternoon to late evening.
The island in the middle of the road was decorated and laid out with tables, chairs, food and drink. There was also games and a paddling pool set up for children and a barbecue area.
Nicolette said: "There was an excellent turnout and a huge amount of food and drink consumed. Feedback from those who were able to attend was excellent with old and young crossing the age divide and enjoying the event.
"The mood on the Close is already more positive and social and we are already talking about when and what our next street party will be."

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