Hartland Road fete was an unexpected delight

SCHOOLS, model your summer fairs and fetes on a certain place in a certain street in NW1. Holy Trinity and St Silas primary school in Hartland Road is your mentor. The Hartland Road area to me once seemed grim. The street where they made the 1947 black-an

SCHOOLS, model your summer fairs and fetes on a certain place in a certain street in NW1. Holy Trinity and St Silas primary school in Hartland Road is your mentor.

The Hartland Road area to me once seemed grim. The street where they made the 1947 black-and-white movie about an escaped convict, It Always Rains on Sunday.

Admittedly in Hartland Road there is a Mexican stand-off between the church and a nightclub painted black. An old iron railway bridge watches to see who is going to be the first to back down.

I used to think the area was full of cross men with shaven heads and unshaven chins, rappers embittered by not being famous, and too-beautiful girl-gangs. I was surprised when I visited by chance at the weekend. The Holy Trinity and St Silas fair was an oasis of entertainment and hospitality.

The music was not too loud, the lemonade was homemade and served by petal-like mothers. Brave, new-wave fathers manned the sideshows. What's more, the book stall was full of bargains - Patricia Cornwell and Enid Blyton. Yo Hartland!

KEN ELLIS

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