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On Monday 4 June 2012, Clapham Youth Centre held its very own Street Party in honour of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Despite the not so ‘blazing’ June weather, the event was nevertheless a massive success with upwards of 200 local residents and staff participating.

The party was the culmination of many hours of planning, fundraising and setting up and the brainchild of our very own Pam Snelling.

Leaflets were printed and dropped into the letterboxes of local residents; local businesses were harangued for raffle prizes and suppliers of all manner of goods and services were tapped for donations.  The result was that Clapham received two grants, one from the Capital Jubilee Fund and one from Lambeth for small events totalling £1,415, donations of food from J. Sainsbury, who have adopted Clapham Youth Centre as their Charity of the Year and an assortment of raffle prizes, gifts, donations and cakes from local residents and a massive donation of cans of fizzy drinks from Tango.

Clapham Youth Centre’s hall was a picture decked out in bunting and Union flag decorations and for those interested in history, there were many displays and photographs specially prepared for the day. The bunting continued outside in Mandrell Road where tables and chairs were arranged, optimistically across the street which was closed off especially for the occasion. 

The Party kicked off at 1.45 pm when the children were invited to join the activity table and make themselves crowns to enhance their costumes.  They then paraded around in their glamorous outfits, serenaded by a violinist and photographed as they were presented with ‘Olympic Style’ gold medals.

Following all that activity, the children were invited to sit down and tucked into tables groaning with dainty sandwiches, fruits, multi-coloured jellies and an amazing assortment of cupcakes.   It was then time for the adults to tuck into their steaming plates of curried goat and vegetarian curry – made by a devoted team of cooks headed up by the very experienced Lyn Ming.  Resident, Angela,  added to the delicious hot food with trays of her aromatic and delicious home-made pizza.   Two massive Jubilee Cakes were cut and distributed and all was washed down with Jubilee Punch, supplied by members of the Candle Factory, and gallons of tea, coffee and biscuits which flowed from the urn all the day long!

For further entertainment, everyone was invited to guess where the giant lollipop was situated on a map; to guess the names of no less than three teddies and finally enter the free raffle with its many delightful prizes.  The children were also able to play hoopla and win cans of pop!  Throughout the afternoon, there were drumming lessons to take part in and the opportunity to ‘have your face painted’. 

The atmosphere was relaxed and fun with many neighbours reporting that they had found themselves in conversation with each other for the very first time. Now that’s something that doesn’t happen all that often thanks to our hectic urban lifestyle!

Needless to say a great day was had by all and lest we forget, all thanks to Her Majesty, The Queen for providing a very good excuse for us to celebrate!



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