On Sunday 12th June, The Mall in St James’s Park was transformed for its largest ever street party to celebrate The Queen’s 90th birthday. Well Billingham held their own community version, with already over 1000 residents attending and coming together as one town, even gaining TV coverage and TEAM BCT was a big part of making it happen.
The event was the brainchild of local community activist Pat Chambers who contacted local community groups and individuals to see if they could make it happen. As part of this process a call went out to BCT founder Paul Burgum and all the experience that BCT Aspire have for hosting outdoor events.
Paul Burgum said ” Quite honestly it was an honour to be approached to get on board with event. We knew it would be a lot of hard work, but it’s kinda what we do so hard work isn’t enough to scare us away. It was great to work with so many other talented local people and groups and i am really proud of what we achieved”.
The event was attended by young and old with residents from Wynyard Woods Residential Home and Hadrian’s Park Residential Home bringing their elderly to join with us, even joining the BCT children on stage for the National Anthem. This was along with local groups such as The Royal British Legion, Billingham Bowling Club, Billingham Junior Football club as we celebrated HM The Queen in our wholly volunteer ran event.
First up we had Tapshoes and Tutu’s kicking off the event ran by the very talented Ami Carney, providing a range of dance performances from children as young as 3 year old, which set the tone for an amazing day as the kids wowed the crowds.
The music bill was brought together using friends of BCT and what a bunch of performers we managed to pull together, both from our own BCT family with Nathan Duff, Samantha Durnan, then ex BCT member Ty Lewis, long times friends The Alice Charmers.
Our headline act was our old friend Nigel Clark of Dodgy, who had literally played the Isle of Wight Festival then boarded a ferry, to then drive up the country to perform in Billingham – totally outstanding effort before he even performed. For the finale Nigel invited the children of BCT Aspire to join, whilst the crowd all joined in with the little dance we had created to Good Enough.
There was a host of children’s games and activities, including children colouring their crown’s and wearing them when we sung the National Anthem at 3pm followed by some community singing (with more dancing from Tapshoes and Tutu’s) BCT Aspire had all our guys delivering some taster sessions over at the music tent and we had some awesome face painting as is a must at any BCT summer event.
Pat Chambers said “We’re grateful to support from St Modwen’s for permissions to use the town centre for our huge event, Paul Burgum MD at BCT Aspire for pulling together a fabulously eclectic mix of talent to perform for us, local businesses who helped with contributions towards event delivery including Billingham Legacy Foundation, Low Vision, Queensway Dental, Fujifilm and Tesco – a huge thank you!”
The official organisers of The Big Lunch – Eden Project and The Big Lottery, made the event a media hub on the day as we had so much going on, with our national anthem featured on BBC Look North local news.
If you need support with your own event please get in touch with BCT Aspire. Our team are capable of organising and providing all aspects of your event and making it a memorable occasion.