The Big Lunch Champions Community Spirit in Warrenpoint

Newry Times News Posted by
info@newrytimes.com
Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013
Community

Charlotte Street in Warrenpoint has been short-listed for a prestigious UK-wide award, which recognises the positive transformation that has taken place since the residents first held a Big Lunch event in Warrenpoint in June 2012.

Local residents, Raquel Rodrigues and Conor Keenan, who nominated Charlotte Street, are delighted to be in the final six shortlisted from Northern Ireland and one of 35 communities across the UK competing for the final of The Big Lunch Community Awards.

Should Charlotte Street reach the final five they will attend a private ceremony at Clarence House, London to receive their award from HRH The Duchess of Cornwall, Patron of The Big Lunch, on Tuesday 23 April.

Charlotte Street didn’t let the rain last summer dampen their community spirit when they held a Big Lunch on their street last year.

The Northern Ireland Fire service, which has a station on the street joined in and was very supportive and the local Presbyterian Church opened its doors and joined in the fun, which brought the residents of the street closer together.

As part of their Big Lunch, the residents put together a photography exhibition, showcasing over one hundred years of memories from the street.

Their Big Lunch attracted people from far and wide with connections to the town, including an American gentleman of Northern Irish decent, who had relatives that had lived in Charlotte Street in years gone by.

After learning Charlotte Street had been short-listed for The Big Lunch Community Awards, Raquel Rodrigues, organiser of Charlotte Street’s Big Lunch, said, “We’re delighted to have been short-listed for The Big Lunch Community Award.

“The Big Lunch has brought our street closer together and encouraged residents to find out more about their heritage. We had a fantastic time organising the event and I would certainly recommend it to others.”

The Big Lunch is a Lottery-funded initiative led by the Eden Project. It’s a one day get together for neighbours sharing community, food, friendship and fun. 8.5 million people took part in 2012 and this year’s Big Lunch will take place on Sunday 2nd June.

For further information or to request your free pack including posters, invitations, a planner and other materials to help organise your Big Lunch, visit: www.thebiglunch.com. Northern Ireland residents who request their free Big Lunch pack could win £1000 to spend on their community.

Barbara Windsor, Actress and long-standing supporter of The Big Lunch is a member of the judging panel selecting the five finalists, she said: “I’m delighted to be part of the judging process for this fantastic award.

“The Big Lunch is such a simple idea yet the amazing stories that have come out of it prove that it really does work and I’d urge everyone to get involved this year.”


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