Don your bib and your best banqueting gear and prepare for a superb international feast south of the river
August is set to be a special month for Southville and Bemmy, with the Bedminster BID’s plans for a series of globally themed events under the umbrella title ‘World of Bedminster’. From world musicians scurrying between venues, and a host of workshops and classes saluting international influences, to a massive street banquet showcasing flavours from around the planet, the celebrations will highlight the international diversity that exists south of the river.
The party starts on 2 August with the ever-popular Musicians on the Run – a unique musical event that sees performers dash to and from numerous venues across Bedminster and Southville, in a bid to be crowned the top Musician on the Run. In previous years, this event has gone down a storm, featuring a hugely diverse array of music, from folk to pop, rock, soul and jazz, but this year it will take on even more of a global feel. “This will be the fifth Musicians on the Run and we wanted to do something a little different, that would tie into our World of Bedminster theme,” says organiser Tom Beard. “We want to see people with guitars, banjos, bongos, sitars, accordions and maybe even a few instruments you’ve never even heard of.”
Then, throughout the month, a range of classes, workshops and participatory events will take place throughout the area; with the jewel in the crown being the Big Bedminster Banquet on 20 August, when the lower end of North Street – from Hebron Road to Cannon Street – will be closed and transformed into a globally inspired dining destination. No ordinary feast, the Big Bedminster Banquet will see 500 meals served up for free, as part of a wider initiative to honour the hard work and dedication of some of the area’s unsung heroes – nominated by the BID, which has been asking the public for the names of community-minded individuals that they feel deserve a seat at the table.
However, you don’t have to be a meal ticket holder to get in on the fun – the banquet will be open to all, and people are encouraged to head down for a flavour of Bedminster. Local traders will also be dishing up special one-off dishes, there’ll be plenty of stalls and pop-ups to add to the market feel, and the street will be filled with live entertainment including music, displays and demonstrations from community groups and kids’ activities, all with international influences.
“We want 500 people who have made a difference in the area through voluntary and community work to join us to enjoy a community meal for free as Bedminster’s way of saying thank you,” says Simon Dicken, BID chairman. “Everyone is welcome to come on down – there’ll be plenty of food and fun for all. We invite everyone across Bristol to join us for what promises to be a very special day.”
To get involved or nominate someone, visit bedminster.org.uk