Earlier today, we spilled the beans on what we had been up to recently, gathering participants from across the country to join world-famous 3D artist Kurt Wenner and inviting them into his latest creation to launch this year’s Big Lunch!
And it’s proved a great success! Take a look at the interest online so far! We’re thrilled that Kurt’s unique talents are opening The Big Lunch up to more audiences. So we thought it only right, we’d do a bit of filming and let you in on how it’s done.
Kurt was also kind enough to share some thoughts behind his latest work and the expertise that went into creating the image.
So the big reveal is finally upon us! We’ve been bursting to let you in on what we’ve been up to lately and now we can finally spill the beans. This morning we gathered participants from last year to join world-famous 3D artist Kurt Wenner and invited them into his latest creation to launch this year’s Big Lunch in quite frankly stunning fashion!
The five-by-five metre 3D masterpiece took a total of four hours to create and sees giant sandwiches, fruit, cakes, burgers, buns and cups of tea breaking free from a Big Lunch table and “floating up” into the hands of the surrounding Big Lunchers.
It’s great to see a legendary artist like Kurt back the campaign too;
“The scene I have created is vibrant, colourful and joyous, born from people of all walks of life coming together and enjoying the unique community and friendship feel of many Big Lunch events.”
Simon Kenton from Oxford, who participated in The Big Lunch in 2009 said:
“When I heard about the Big Lunch last year I thought this was a great campaign for my community to be involved with. At the event there was a real buzz as our village united. This year we’re aiming to increase the great community spirit created – this is only the beginning! It’s great to meet some fellow Big Lunchers today and hear how their communities have been affected also by this simple act of togetherness.”
Eden Project and Big Lunch co-founder Tim Smit also had time to tell us why The Big Lunch is so important;
“We believe it’s important to see neighbours and communities come together to break down barriers and build bridges with each other. It’s time we realise that our streets are more than just pavements but solid foundations for our future happiness. Holding a Big Lunch is the perfect opportunity to take the first step towards this.”
The Big Lunch 2010 is only eight weeks away, and today, for those of you who love to lunch, and are planning a street party, Kurt’s work should serve as another reminder of the imminent deadline for applying to your local council to close your road. Now is also the time for those lunchers opting for a BBQ in the back garden or a picnic in park instead, to start gathering neighbours together to plan for the biggest Big Lunch this country has ever seen!
We’ll have more video footage from today’s event a little later on but in the meantime, you can take a look at a few more photos on our Flickr album and remember, you can sign up and register a lunch here or see who is already getting their party under way here!
Just a quick note to confirm that we have a venue confirmed for Tunbridge Wells on the 2nd June. We’re going to be at the Millennium Clock from 9.30 in the morning finishing around 4pm so be sure to swing by and say hello!
We’ve just had exciting word of our application being approved for us to appear in Norwich on the 28th May at The Forum as part of our regional tour kicking off next Monday.
As we said yesterday, we’re trying to visit as many people as possible across the country so we’d love to see you at any of the places we’ve listed. And remember, we’re coming on tour with a little surprise!
We have some exciting news. From May 24th through to the 4th June, the Big Lunch team are coming to a town near you!
The team will be visiting nine UK towns and cities;
1. Glasgow on the 24th, George Square
2. Newcastle on the 25th, Northumberland street
3. Leeds on the 26th, Briggate
4. Manchester on the 27th, Albert Square
5. Norwich on the 28th, The Forum
6. Plymouth on the 1st June, the Piazza
7. Tunbridge Wells on the 2nd June, Millenium Clock
8. Cardiff on the 3nd June, Queen St outside the Queen’s Arcade
9. Bimingham on the 4th June on Victoria Square
We’re also going to be bringing a bit of a surprise with us too…. which we’ll announce this Friday! So keep your eyes peeled to the news and this website!
In this morning’s Daily Telegraph, Boris Johnson gave his support to this year’s Big Lunch.
It’s great to see such a high profile politician lend his support to the campaign. Already in London alone, there are councils across the capital including Croydon, Greenwich, Hackney, Islington, Kingston Upon Thames, Lambeth, Lewisham, Newham and Wandsworth all pledging their support and actively promoting the Big Lunch within their respective boroughs. Of these, Croydon, Lewisham and Kingston Upon Thames are not charging for road closures whilst Lambeth are accepting applications up until today and will put them through for free up until this date.
So if you are planning to close your road, do remember to speak to your local council as they may be supporting the lunch and will be able to help you with your application too.
Don’t forget, you can check out our interactive map to see what’s going on in your neighbourhood too! As always, keep us posted with your latest news and how you’re getting on!
Sorting the kitty
A few of you have been asking how to fund your Big Lunch.
If you’re looking for small grants or pots of cash to help out, you could try contacting your local council, housing association or community foundation, or google for possible local and community funding streams. There’s no guarantee and often there are set times of the year for applications which may not coincide with when you need the money.
Another option is to start a kitty with interested neighbours and set up a donations box or run a raffle on the day to recoup your costs. You shouldn’t need to register a community raffle that takes place during your Big Lunch as long as the tickets are sold, and winners announced, at the event, and you haven’t spent more than £100 on organising the raffle, or more than £500 on prizes.
It’s worth remembering that you don’t need to have an all-singing, all-dancing Big Lunch. The most important bit is that you get together, meet your neighbours and start to build a lasting community. There are some top tips on how to hold a Big Lunch on a shoestring below and there are lots more low-cost ideas on our website.
1) Location – if there is a fee for shutting your road, or you are required to buy insurance, there are plenty of other outdoor options for getting together with your neighbours. Any common ground will do, such as a communal garden, local park, library or community centre grounds, pub garden, private garden or driveway, school playground, church, mosque, synagogue, gurdwara or temple… These places are often at the heart of the community so provide the perfect backdrop for a Big Lunch. Make sure you get permission from the relevant people beforehand. Our friends at Greenspace have plenty of information about your local park.
2) Promotion – poster and leaflet templates are free to download and print from our website, or you can make your own and photocopy in black and white to save costs. Handwritten notes and home made leaflets add a touch of personality, drop off at every other door and ask them to create another or pass it on to their neighbours. If all else fails, knock on a few doors, have a chat and ask them to spread the word to their next door neighbours and so on. You’ll soon have the street or block talking and you’ll be surprised how keen everyone will be to help out – often they just want someone else to take the first step.
3) Food – there are lots of options here. You could ask everyone to bring a dish or desert with them, matching items with people so you don’t get lots of the same thing. If this won’t work you could always ask people to bring their own lunch – home-made or shop bought, the important part is sitting and eating together. Why not catch up with our friend Helen who has started blogging about her own Big Lunch in Peckham.
4) Decorations – re-use is the name of the game. Search your shed, cupboards and under your bed, pool the items and get everyone involved in creating and making. You can turn old sheets or clothes into colourful bunting or table cloths, and make signs, pictures or murals out of old magazines, wrapping paper or bits and bobs collected together, add a few balloons and hey presto you’ve got a street party. You might even be able to blag bunting used for World Cup celebrations from your local pub!
5) Furniture – there’s no need to buy new. Bring your own chairs, tables and rugs to the party if you can, if that’s too tricky, try ebay or freecycle for cheap or free tables, chairs, benches and sofas. Use upturned buckets for seats, or covered ironing boards as a temporary table.
6) Entertainment – find the talent on your street, we’re sure there will be someone hiding their light under a bushel. Whether they DJ, sing, or play an instrument, tell jokes, juggle or have a set of giant jenga at home, pooling talents and creativity will keep everyone entertained all day. The old games are still the best, egg and spoon, sack and three-legged races, tug of war or hopscotch, and if you’re still stuck for ideas or a little shy there are loads more suggestions on our website.