Published Friday 28 November 2014 at 16:58
Hundreds of people gathered together for good food, dancing and song at a huge fun –and free – event for older people in the borough.
Guests filled the dance floor at the Just Good Friends event at King George’s Hall, as local acts belted out hits and led a sing-song. Big raffle prizes also saw lucky people go home with some fantastic gifts.
Entertainment came courtesy of singer Joyce Kearton, who sang classics from the 1940s to the 1960s; Blackburn duo The Remedy, who performed both modern and vintage songs; and The Recycled Wrens, who staged sequence dancing to wartime classics and then led the whole room in a sing-a-long of timeless tunes.
Nearly 200 people flocked to the event aimed at bringing older people together, giving them an enjoyable day out and helping people meet up with old friends and make new ones.
Everyone who attended was treated to a slap-up afternoon tea, with finger sandwiches, scones with jam and cream, luxury strawberry tarts and traditional cakes.
Blackburn with Darwen Council Leader Cllr Kate Hollern was master of ceremonies at the party, which also featured a display of portraits by renowned local artist Peter Leyden. Cllr Mohammed Khan, Executive Member for Health and Adult Social Care and Cllr Maureen Bateson, Executive member for Regeneration, also attended the party.
Local businesses that sponsored the event and donated fabulous raffle prizes were: Liz ‘n’ Lils; Spiritual Enlightenment; Blackburn Market; Chocolat by Daniel Coletta; Calendar Club; Thornton’s and The Mall.
Transport was kindly provided by Dial-a-Ride who gave their services for free, picking up guests who needed transport from all over the borough and taking them to King George’s Hall and then taking them home again after the event.
The top raffle prizes included artisan chocolates by Chocolat by Daniel Coletta in Blackburn, an afternoon tea for two at Liz ‘n’ Lils, vouchers for Blackburn Market and The Mall, an Indian head massage from Spiritual Enlightenment and chocolates from Thornton’s in The Mall.
The event was held as part of Blackburn with Darwen Council’s ‘Your Call’ campaign, part of which is a drive to boost community spirit and wellbeing across the borough.
Cllr Kate Hollern, leader of Blackburn with Darwen Council, said:
This was a really special event and exceeded all expectations – it was wonderful that so many people came along and everyone really enjoyed themselves. People were up dancing as soon as the music started which was fantastic to see.
It is really important that we try to help older people have fulfilling lives and help them to meet other people. A big part of the Your Call campaign is building stronger communities and closer ties and events like this can contribute to that. I would also like to give huge thanks to local businesses which supported the event and donated raffle prizes – they really helped to make it a success.
You can view more pictures from the event at the Blackburn with Darwen Flickr Page.