North East Connected

Schools and Community Groups on Voyage of Creativity

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 14.54.28Children and community groups across South Tyneside are being submersed into a world of sea serpents and aquatic creatures as preparations continue for a key highlight in the Borough’s calendar of summer events.

The Maritime Mayhem-themed Summer Parade, which takes to the streets on Saturday 2 July, will celebrate South Tyneside’s rich maritime history of seafaring and shipbuilding as well as sights of the seaside. It also marks 150 years of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade.

Youngsters at Hedworthfield Primary School in Jarrow were recently treated to an early insight into some of the shimmering costumes and high energy choreography which will feature in this year’s Summer Parade, during a visit from the parade’s artistic director, community-based production company – The Creative Seed.

Councillor Alan Kerr, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council with responsibility for Culture and Leisure, said: “The Summer Parade is one of the highlights of the South Tyneside Festival and this year’s event looks set to be the biggest yet.

“A lot of planning and preparation goes into making the annual Summer Parade a success and it is wonderful to see local young people and community groups showing such enthusiasm and support as excitement continues to build for what will be a spectacular parade with a real carnival flavour.”

The Summer Parade will set sail from South Shields Town Hall at 1pm along Fowler Street and Ocean Road to Bents Park, where the entertainment will continue until 4.30pm, with live music and family friendly activities in Bents Park.

Pirates, Poseidon, giant octopuses and sea serpents are just some of the colourful characters which will be taking to the streets alongside spectacular floats adorned with nautical colours and decorations, marching bands, stilt walkers, puppets, dance troupes and a yellow submarine.

Angela Sutherland, Deputy Head Teacher of Hedworthfield Primary School said: “The children thoroughly enjoyed their visit from The Creative Seed and seeing some of the amazing costumes and dancing that will feature in the Summer Parade. The children who come to The Creative Seed Club on Tuesday are really enjoying the workshops too. We are all so excited to be involved.”

As well as working with schoolchildren, the Council and The Creative Seed are hosting a series of workshops enabling the wider community to get involved.

Community groups are reminded that they can get help and guidance to develop their ideas around the parade’s nautical theme at drop in sessions taking place this Saturday (14 May), from 1pm to 4pm, at the portacabin inBents Park, South Shields.

Garner Harris, of The Creative Seed, said: “It’s fantastic to be working with schools and groups in South Tyneside in the run up to the Summer Parade. The response we have from schools has been fantastic with hundreds of children coming to join us on the day.

“Although our preparations are going really well, we are keen to involve as many people as possible and hope to hear from many more groups. With only two months to go to parade day, we look forward to developing the nautical concept even further over the coming weeks.”

Groups interested in entering the Summer Parade are advised to call South Tyneside Council’s Events Team on(0191) 455 4031 for further information.

Those wanting support with their dance choreography, or more details about workshops, can contact The Creative Seed on or call Garner on 07725 267 478 or Sandy on 07920 107 479. The Creative Seed also runs a Carnival Club on Friday evenings at Hedworthfield Community Association with sessions including costume making (5pm), street dance (6pm) and circus skills (7pm).

The Summer Parade is organised by South Tyneside Council and supported by Port of Tyne and Colmans Fish and Chips. It forms part of the annual South Tyneside Festival, which returns in June with its exciting FREE three month line up of live music in the Amphitheatre, open air Sunday concerts and family friendly events, entertainment and activities.

The festival also includes a packed programme of brass band music by the seaside, a classical concert with Proms in the Park, Summer Charity Fayre and children’s entertainment with the return of the Kids Fun-fest.

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