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Bridging the generation gap at the Valentine’s Ceilidh

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

02 March, 2018 — By Emily Finch, Helen Chapman

Joining hands at North London Cares dance social

Both the elderly and the young felt loved-up last Saturday at a Valentines-themed dance social for North London Cares (NLC). The event took place at the Drovers Centre and was one of many socials that take place at NLC throughout the year. Alex Smith, founder and CEO of NLC, said: “At this time of year, as the snow beats down, people can feel isolated from the community around them. North London Cares was founded seven years ago to create opportunities like the Valentine’s Ceilidh to bring older and younger neighbours together to share time, laughter and new experiences.

Sam, Martin, Geoff and James enjoy a break from the dance floor

Regular social clubs like these really do help people to stay well connected and to bring groups together that might not ordinarily interact in our fast-paced city.” NLC aims to reduce the gaps in generational divides with the purpose to bring together older people with deep roots in Islington, but with few connections, and younger people who may have lots of connections but are less rooted in the borough. More details can be found at:

It’s a jazz thing for Councillor Klute

Cllr Martin Klute will be jazzing things up at the Plaquemine Lock pub on March 4

Known as an architectural technician by day, a local councillor by night and a jazz musician even later in the night, Martin Klute is bringing his musical talents to one of his favourite pubs on Sunday. The St Peter’s Ward councillor will be playing classic jazz hits at the Plaquemine Lock in Angel between 1pm and 3pm with his double bass and his band. He has previously played at Glastonbury music festival and even alongside Ben Elton on the Channel 4 series Saturday Live which used to grace our screens in the late 1980s and 1990s. Cllr Klute said: “I think I’m slightly beyond nervous, but I’m looking forward to it. It’s a friendly pub and hospitable.” The multi-talented man used to cover pop tunes such as hits by Elton John but found Jazz much more fitting to his style. The Plaquemine Lock at 139 Graham Street is known for its strong links to America’s Louisiana and opened to great fanfare last year. They offer traditional Cajun cooking including gumbo – a shrimp dish – and even a classic pecan pie. What better way to spend a Sunday then scoffing a warm pie and listening to Jazz while the snow melts outside?

Happy Chinese New Year at day centre

Rita Gould, Alsen Day Centre service user with Sookin Wong, volunteer at the Islington Chinese Association

Party-goers danced around a sunshine-yellow dog puppet celebrating the Chinese New Year of the Dog last Friday. The get-together took place at the Alsen Day Centre and was organised by the Islington Chinese Association (ICA), with line dancing, tai chi and dressing-up for the special occasion. The ICA, now based on Hatchard Road, was established 33 years ago and used to be located at the Alsen Day Centre. CEO Steven Ng, who has been with the ICA for 31 years and organised the Chinese New Year party, said: “It seemed like we were returning home. It was a big moment for us. Our clients told us they would not have come this far without us which was very warming.” Islington Chinese Association members can enjoy meetings for elderly residents that take place on Saturdays at the Alsen Day Centre as well as singing lessons for all on a Tuesday. “Our services offer a holistic approach helping people live life to the full,” said Steven. More information can be found at or by emailing


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