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Football talent shines with the sun as 300 people turn out for debut spring festival in Marylebone

PUBLISHED: 17:00 24 April 2013

Organisers of the spring festival, including CityWest Homes' John MacDonald, centre, with football tournament winners. Picture: Polly Hancock

Organisers of the spring festival, including CityWest Homes' John MacDonald, centre, with football tournament winners. Picture: Polly Hancock

Archant

More than 300 people turned out in the sunshine for the Church Street area’s first spring festival.

Sisters Shante, eight, and Justice, seven, hold a spectacled cayman crocodile under the watchful eye of Safari Pete, at Greenside Community Centre. Picture: Polly HancockSisters Shante, eight, and Justice, seven, hold a spectacled cayman crocodile under the watchful eye of Safari Pete, at Greenside Community Centre. Picture: Polly Hancock

The event was a roaring success and saw around 60 young people put their ball skills to the test during a five-a-side football tournament, while others got to discover more about exotic reptiles, enjoy live music and explore their inner artist with craft activities.

The event, at Greenside Community Centre in Lilestone Street, Marylebone, came about after charity Vital Regeneration was approached by two students from the London Business School (LBS), who were keen to get more involved in community activities in the college’s neighbourhood.

A band from the college also performed live, while Safari Pete was on hand with a clutch of exotic animals and reptiles to show anyone who dared get close enough. Face painting and henna tattoo stalls helped spread the colour too.

An LBS squad took the honours among the 12-team football tournament, the highlight of a day made possible by several groups clubbing together including LBS and Vital Regeneration, CityWest Homes, Four Feathers Youth Club and Lisson Green Tenants’ And Residents’ Association.

Some of the boys taking part in the football competition. Picture: Polly HancockSome of the boys taking part in the football competition. Picture: Polly Hancock

John MacDonald, community engagement officer for CityWest Homes, said: “The good thing about it was it was all about the community working together. We will be doing more events like this, getting all the partners together. They all came in on their own time; when you think that there were 20-30 volunteers coming in, that just shows you.”

Marie Monaghan of Vital Regeneration said: “It was the first spring festival that we have done with these partners and it was really successful. We had regular meetings and it turned into a much bigger event. We want to make it annual event if we can with the London Business School.”


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