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Bandstand plays on, thanks to workmen

Who’s been making the news round your way this week?

28 April, 2017 — By Joe Cooper

At the Bandstand on Tuesday, when Jessica Barnes, 4, (below) handed a thank-you card to Hochtief project manager Eoin Regan

THE Highbury Fields Bandstand is looking better than ever after generous builders lent a helping hand. Workmen from construction firm Hochtief regularly walk past the bandstand on their way to work on the bridge reconstruction at Highbury Corner. Hochtief staff read in the Tribune that the bandstand has had its funding cut by Islington Council. “We saw the article and the ‘Save our Bandstand’ poster and so came up here to see what we could do to help,” said project manager Eoin Regan. They built new decking and repainted the front of the bandstand and repaired the floor inside – they also plan to improve the sandpit.

Bandstand manager Sam Parrington said: “It’s amazing. They’ve extended the life of the bandstand and made it safer. It was on the verge of collapse – we can’t thank them enough.”

Children from the bandstand handed over a “thank you” card to the workmen on Tuesday.

Highbury East councillor Caroline Russell said: “Hopefully others will be inspired by this generosity to donate to the bandstand crowdfunder to help them raise the funds they so urgently need to keep the precious under-fives drop-in services running.”

The bandstand have set up a crowdfunding page to help them cope with a council funding cut of 70 per cent.


Project Soup fundraiser is back

KING’S Cross community groups will have a chance to bid for cash for their cause on Wednesday. Project Soup will be visiting the Hugh Cubitt Centre in Barnsbury.

The premise is simple – attendees pay a suggested donation of £5, and hear from four different projects before discussing their merits over a bowl of soup and voting for their favourite. The winner of the ballot takes the money raised on the door to invest in their project. Project Soup raised almost £2,000 last year for Islington groups, including Food for All and the Islington Bangladeshi Association and Culpeper Community Garden.

The first event this year takes places at the Hugh Cubitt Centre, 6.30pm-8.30pm on Wednesday May 3, 48 Collier Street, N1, 020 7021 4127. If you would like to pitch your project or volunteer, email

Cracking time at Alsen Day Centre!

Andreas Michael at the Alsen Day Centre

THE Greek Orthodox tradition of the cracking of the red eggs was celebrated at the Alsen Day Centre on Friday, which takes place during dinner soon after Easter Sunday.

Nickos Solkala and Bambos Charalambous

The eggs are dyed red to represent the blood of Christ and the hard shell symbolises the sealed tomb – the cracking of which represents his resurrection from the dead.

Mayor Kat Fletcher at the centre with guests

The goal is to crack the opponent’s egg first. Greek food was served and traditional music played at the centre on the Andover estate in Finsbury Park while Mayor Kat Fletcher chatted to the elderly. Staff member Koulla Soteriades then cracked eggs with Autothoksia but lost.

Egg cracking: Autothoksia and staff member Koulla Soteriades

“Whoever wins keeps their egg for seven years, then it can be used as a pendant,” Koulla said. The Alsen Day Centre regularly provides activities geared towards the many diverse communities of Finsbury Park.


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