THOUSANDS of families enjoyed dance, music, sport, food and funfair rides at what proved to be one of the most popular Under One Sky festivals ever.
Sunday’s community spectacular, held at Byron Recreation Ground in Christchurch Avenue, Wealdstone, for the first time, drew 8,000 visitors from all over the borough and beyond to see more than 100 acts staged over eight hours of entertainment.
Visitors browsed community stalls, rode fun fair rides, played and tried sports, watched performances and, of course, bought an ice cream on what was the hottest day of the year so far.
Hundreds of children performed and took part in a colourful schools’ parade.
Olympic medallist Richard Hounslow, from Harrow, showed off his canoeing skills in the Sports and Healthy Living Village, which was running demonstrations and taster sessions.
Youngsters from Kidology Dance Co, who attend classes at YMCA in Roxeth Hill, South Harrow, delighted the audience with their body popping, hip-hop, breakdancing and street dancing skills, and some gymnastics skills thrown in.
Lauren O’Connell, co-owner of the school, said: “It was brilliant. Everyone came off stage buzzing and wanted to do it again.”
A traditional sing-along knees-up was enjoyed in the vintage themed All Our Yesterdays tent run by Edgware-based youth group, Flash Musicals.
Terry Revill, founder of the charity, said afterwards: “It went down a storm and we were busy from start until finish. Everyone was clapping and waving flags. A lot of people said how good it was and want us to perform at their events.”
Under One Sky was back after being cancelled last year due to the The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the Olympic Games.
Council leader Thaya Idaikkadar said on the day: “People are enjoying themselves, some are playing sports, the dancing is fantastic. Everyone seems to be happy.
“The question is, even though it’s very successful, can we afford to keep it going? We’ve cut back on the VIP Lounge to save money, but you can’t put a price on happiness.”
Mr Idaikkadar said the future of Under One Sky, which the council subsidises to the tune of £70,000, would be reviewed as part of the annual budget process.
A Harrow Police spokeswoman said three arrests were made.
A 45-year-old man from Harrow was arrested on suspicion of common assault after allegedly hitting a child. He has been bailed to return to a date in July.
Two men were arrested for being in breach of their bail conditions and a man was summonsed for illegal street trading.