Kingston community come together to celebrate Big Lunch

By Pippa Field

Uniting the community and putting people in touch; organisers of a summer feast of food and fun in Kingston hope Sunday’s Big Lunch will revolutionise the town.

June 1 saw an estimated four million communities across the UK sit down for a Big Lunch with neighbours they may not previously have known as part of Halifax’s Helping Britain Prosper Plan.

And Market Square was just as busy a week later with hundreds of people enjoying a lunch of sandwiches, cake and candy floss as well as music and face painting from 11am to 3pm.

Organiser Ashley Braund said: “It was a great day; my colleagues did a great job of bringing people across, giving them a slice of cake and getting people involved.

“We had a lot of people coming across at different times, all the food that we had brought was gone by 2.30pm.

“Some people were surprised by what was going on but once we encouraged them to come over it was great.

“There was a real community feel to things; we had music, food and even a candy floss machine which was really popular with the children.

“We were also raising money for multiple sclerosis on the day which we are looking forward to handing over. We wanted to not only raise money but awareness too.

“There were a lot of Big Lunches taking place across the country in halls  and places like that, but with ours being out in the open, we were able to get more people come over and get people talking with each other. I think it’s important that something like this continues to grow.”

Over the years millions of people have taken part in Big Lunches and made a real change in their communities, with Kingston’s organiser Ashley adamant the same can now be said for him and his neighbours.

Organising a Big Lunch is just one way that people can make a difference in their area with Halifax committed to being the banking group that brings communities closer together to help them thrive.

Another way is to pledge on Halifax’s website, and after their Big Lunch success, Ashley is urging as many people as possible to get involved.

“This is the second year I’ve been involved with the Big Lunch having helped organise one in north west London last year,” added Ashley.

“It is not just about bringing the community together but team work and people working together. It’s a lot of fun to organise and there is a real sense of reward when it comes to fruition.”

Halifax is helping people give extra in their communities, whether hosting a Big Lunch event, or making their community a better place to live. To recognise and reward people who are giving extra, Halifax is rewarding members of the public who make one of four pledges at

Photo courtesy of The Big Lunch, with thanks.
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