Fergal Keane Opens Bedford Park Festival

Hundreds attend the launch of Chiswick's favourite fortnight

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A full list of Festival activities can be found at www.bedfordparkfestival.org

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BBC journalist, broadcaster and author Fergal Keane opened this year’s Bedford Park Festival on Saturday 13th June, opposite Turnham Green tube station in Chiswick.

Fergal Keane has lived in Chiswick for many years and his charity Msaada, which helps people in Rwanda, has been chosen by St Michael & All Angels Church as one of three charities that will benefit from this year’s fortnight of arts and community events.

Fergal Keane and Father Kevin Morris

Pic Ian Wylie

During the Green Days Fête and Craft Fair opening, Fergal Keane judged the fancy dress parade with Father Kevin Morris, vicar of St Michael’s and All Angels Church where he joked that “reporting on the war in Ukraine is a lot easier than judging a children's fancy dress contest.”

Pics of fancy dress by Snappy Snaps

During the opening event attended by hundreds of people,Fergal gave a speech commending “this extraordinary community in Chiswick” and why he calls it home.

Fergal will also be leading the Poetry Evening on Wednesday June 17 at St Michael’s and All Angels Church, hosted by local poets Anne Marie Fyfe and C L Dallat, one of several events at this year’s Festival commemorating WB Yeats Anniversary.

Several other local celebrities who took part in the Green Days weekend included - chef and cookery writer Allegra McEvedy who judged the Great Green Days Bake-Off, and broadcaster and food writer Lucy McDonald of Crumbs TV who was one of the judges of the Jam and Chutney-Making competition.

'Chiswick's favourite fortnight' runs from the Green Days weekend culminating in the Festival Mass at St Michael & All Angels Church and the Bedford Park Open Gardens on Sunday 28 June 2015.

See the full schedule of the next fortnight of Festival Events and Bookings,


Pic Ian Wylie

Having fun at the fete - Pic Ian Wylie

'Chiswick's favourite fortnight culminates in the Festival Mass at St Michael & All Angels Church and the Bedford Park Open Gardens on Sunday 28 June 2015.

Tickets for all events are now on sale at the Festival’s website: www.bedfordparkfestival.org

LBC presenter Beverley Turner, who is married to the Olympic rower James Cracknell will also be part of the interesting schedule of the festival fortnight, talking about the day James Cracknell was critically injured in a cycle crash, just days after he had appeared at the Bedford Park Festival five years ago.

She’ll be interviewed by former BBC correspondent Torin Douglas about how she juggles her writing and broadcasting with her ante-natal classes at The Blooming Bunch and looking after James and their three children, in the festival event “Blooming Tired!”

The Festival is proud to present two new plays this year. Fondly Remembered by Gareth Armstrong stars five distinguished actors - Frank Barrie, Lucinda Curtis, John Griffiths, Josie Kidd and Philip York – in a wickedly funny comedy full of revelation, rediscovery and revenge. It will play at the Tabard Theatre for 5 performances from 17-20 June. Tim Waller’s new comedy, Cast Aside, is about love, loneliness and the roles we play in the world of show-business.

St Michael & All Angels

The Festival will be celebrating the 150 th birthday of WB Yeats with 3 events: a Poetry Evening with Fergal Keane; a WB Yeats Anniversary Lecture by poets Cahal Dallat and Anne-Marie Fyfe and a WB Yeats Literary Walk with poet, musician and Radio 4 reviewer Cahal Dallat.

Other events in the Festival include: an Oscar Wilde Evening with Gerard Logan performing The Ballad of Reading Gaol followed by Andrew Maud’s sensitive reading of The Happy Prince; In conjunction with the Chiswick Picturehouse, there will be private pop-up screenings of sing-a-long Frozen and the award-winning film Pride.

London Welsh Male choir - pic by John Downing

Musical highlights, for a wide range of tastes, include: Bibby Piano Duo: Midsummer Madness are joined by Carole Boyd and John Rowe (Lynda Snell and Jim Lloyd from The Archers) for a recital full of delights and surprises, including works by Shakespeare, Mendelssohn, Walton and Willy Rushton; The London Welsh Rugby Club Male Voice Choir with their unique sound that thrilled a worldwide audience at the London Olympics closing ceremony; Jazz on a Summer’s Night - a fabulous evening of jazz favourites by The Denis Smith Trio and featuring the vocals of Vanessa Smith; The London Tango Quintet Concert Supper with five musicians including celebrated violinist David Juritz and accordionist Milos Milivojevic ; A Night At The Opera with Milly Forrest and her colleagues from the Royal Academy of Music; the Festival Mass with Mass no. 2 in E minor by Bruckner; and a variety of other concerts.

Children and family events include: a Children’s Morning: Star Wars Epic Yarns with bookreading, felt craft and lightsaber action; and a private pop-up screening for a Family Sing-A-Long to the award-winning film Fnroze

The Bedford Park Festival consists of 31 events over 17 days.

See www.bedfordparkfestival.org for full event and booking details

Regular Festival favourites include the Bedford Park Summer Exhibition, showcasing more than 100 works by local artists; Artists at Home, in which over 50 local artists and craftworkers display their works; the Photographic Exhibition and Competition, the Bedford Park Walk and the Bedford Park Open Gardens.

For art and events’ enthusiasts alike, The Bedford Park Summer Exhibition will be open throughout this week from 12pm to 6pm Daily at St Michael’s and All Angel’s. Free admission for all.

This year the Festival will raise money for St Michael’s Organ and Parish Rooms Appeal, Msaada which helps restore dignity to the forgotten victims of the Rwandan genocide, The Upper Room who feed and support the community in need in West London and The Mulberry Centre in Isleworth, which provides information, advice and support to all those affected by cancer.

The Bedford Park Festival is run by St Michael & All Angels Church, with the active support of dozens of local people and businesses. It was set up in 1967 to foster a sense of community, celebrate the arts, and raise money for urgent repairs to the Church. Since then it has raised hundreds of thousands of pounds for charities.


June 15, 2015