Celebrate! event 27-06-17




We held a community event at Bede Tower, Sunderland on the 27th June 2017. Funded by The Big Lottery Fund’s Celebrate! fund this hugely popular and well attended event brought together many members of the community to share their cultures, beliefs and ideas.

About The Venue

Bede Tower is an historic building that is very well known in the Sunderland area. Formerly the Victorian home of a Sunderland Mayor it has been completely renovated and modernised. The name Bede is after Venerable Bede who was born in Sunderland in the 7th century.

Venerable Bede grew up in St. Peter’s monastery which is still partly visible today about 1 mile away in St. Peter’s church tower and through viewing portals in the floor of the visitor’s centre.

Bede is not only a local figure but is of international importance in Western culture. This provided a marvellous blend of the various cultures both modern and ancient as well as forming a link to a world famous figure from the area whom gained knowledge and experience from an influx of artisans in the 7th century that introduced glass making and many other cultural/artistic elements.

Getting Everything Ready

The event took a lot of planning and setting up, including blowing up all the balloons!


The stage area also had to be set up, including all the sound equipment and lighting.






Fortunately Ram and all the Young Asian Voices staff and volunteers plus Sunderland BME Network, Sunderland City Council staff and Friends of the Drop-In staff worked really efficiently and with the help of Bede Tower staff things got set up perfectly well before the official opening time.


The Dignitaries Arrive

Once the event was opened we were very proud to have the Council Leader of Sunderland City Council, Mr Paul Watson and the Cabinet Secretary, Councillor Melville Speding and the Director of Education Simon Marshall from Sunderland City Council.

Pictured from left to right: Director of Education Sunderland City Council – Mr Simon Marshall, Council leader of Sunderland City Council – Councillor Paul Watson, Chair of Sunderland BME Network/Project Manager of Young Asian Voice – Mr Kamareswaradas Ramanathas and Cabinet Secretary of Sunderland City Council – Councillor Melville Speding.


Lots of people from our different communities came along to the event to join in the fun.


There was music, DJs, tea, coffee, soft drinks and seating for everyone to relax in.





There was also a balloon man who created fantastic shapes and figures using different coloured balloons. Many of the young people who attended the event watch, fascinated by his work.



As everything about this Celebrate! event was about bringing our communities together to discover our shared values we had a lot of very different people.














After a delicious meal everyone was invited to join in dancing. After all it is great exercise! As well as, of course, another way to get to know each other.







Our sincere thanks to everyone who came along to meet new people and make new friends.

More especially our thanks to The Big Lottery Fund Celebrate! fund for their fantastic support for our communities.