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Saturday 23 August 2008

Community Gala a sunny success
By The Forthquarter : 23 Aug 2008

Amazingly the sun shone on Saturday and Granton Community Gala, the first ever community event to be held at The Forthquarter Park was a great success.

The Gala, organised by EMERGE, a consortium set up to develop communities in the Granton Waterfront Area, attracted over 2000 visitors.

People of all ages, from babies to grandparents, enjoyed a sunny afternoon being entertained with music by a Brass Band, Jazz singers and the Chevalier Pipers, hear stories performed by puppets, run off some energy and test their agility with football, frisbee and rugby games with Ainsley Park Sports staff.

The Bible Society Travelling Theatre was probably the most surprising attraction with computerised games and videos adding a new and exiting edge to an age-old story.

Lothian and Borders Fire Brigade, Community Police and Road Safety officers were ‘ out in force’ to talk about their role in the community and a bouncy castle and fairground ride were especially popular with the younger children

There was plenty of opportunity for those just wanting to enjoy the sunshine, take in the view or recharge their batteries. Picnic tables were set up on the lawns and there was a range of refreshments from Ice Cream and burgers to home made biscuits to choose from.

Ross Bell, Community Development Coordinator for EMERGE was elated;” Today has been amazing. To see so many people from all over North Edinburgh come together to enjoy such a beautiful day in such a lovely location is well worth the hard work that everyone involved has put in over the past few months. I want to say thank you to everyone who made this happen. “

Mark Rylance of National Grid Property said “A Gala is an great opportunity for people to meet each other, have a great time. The Forthquarter Park has large green spaces and wide footpaths making it easily accessible for those wanting to attend. We are keen for people to discover and use the facility so hosting the Gala was a win - win situation for everyone. “

“I want to encourage anyone interested in getting involved in community activities to get in touch, we can make a difference.

In addition to those who volunteered their time and skills to make the Gala happen, the support from developers and businesses for this event has been very encouraging.

Edinburgh’s Telford College provided use of their facilities, had an information stand in the main marquee along with Morrison’s Supermarkets who were encouraging local people to apply for positions at the new store scheduled to open in October. Waterfront Edinburgh Ltd provided freebies to encourage participation in the Sports events, and along with Hamlin Daniels they all donated raffle prizes to help EMERGE raise funds for the next community event.

National Grid Property did so much more than host this year’s Gala they gave us their time to help prepare, set up and manage the event.

I hope this hasn’t put them off and that we can come back and do it again, bigger and better next year so we need you.” added Ross

A large section of The Forthquarter Park is now open from dawn till dusk. Access is via the South Gate along West Granton Road.

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