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Crowds at One Big Multicultural Festival celebrate diverse communities in Ipswich

PUBLISHED: 19:41 04 September 2016 | UPDATED: 22:10 04 September 2016

Alexandra Park Ipswich on Sunday hosts the Big Multicultural Festival. entertainment and food stalls
4/9/2016

Alexandra Park Ipswich on Sunday hosts the Big Multicultural Festival. entertainment and food stalls 4/9/2016

Thousands of people turned out to celebrate the cultural diversity in Ipswich at the town’s annual One Big Multicultural Festival in Alexandra Park.

The event, being held for the sixth time, celebrates the diverse communities in the town and this year’s event helped to reinforce the celebration after several months of difficult times for the community.

Ipswich mayor Roger Fern summed up the background to this year’s festival as he made the opening speech at the event.

He said: “Over the last few months, in the wake of the referendum result, some people have said things they should not have done – and frankly they should have known better.

“It is good that we are able to come together as a community at a great event like this – but it is also very important to recognise and celebrate our differences. There is only one Roger Fern!”

Other speakers included borough leader David Ellesmere, Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore, Felixstowe major Jan Garfield and EADT editor Terry Hunt.

The event was set up by the Ipswich and Suffolk Bangladeshi Support Centre – but its organisers and supporters come from across the community of Ipswich and Suffolk as a whole. The hosts on the stage were Terry Baxter, from Inspire Suffolk, and Stephanie Mackentyre, from BBC Radio Suffolk.

Music on the stage was equally diverse – with Indian and Bangladesh performers through to musicians with African, Portuguese, and Balkan roots. There was also music from America that fused country, Cajun and folk strands.

Sunday afternoon’s event was held in near-perfect weather and the VIP guests symbolised the message of peace by releasing white doves from the stage after the official welcoming speeches.

As well as the music, stalls, a mini funfair and a huge variety of diverse food to buy, the event also featured sports competitions and other children’s activities including circus skills.

Police and border force officials are believed to be searching property for a number of illegal immigrants in the Woolverstone area.

Emergency services are at the scene of a collision between a pedestrian and a car near the Mulberry Tree pub in Ipswich.

A Suffolk soldier who punched and kicked an Ipswich taxi driver during a drunken night out in the town has been jailed for 16 months.

A Suffolk nightclub DJ has denied sexually assaulting a woman while she was asleep.

A 90-year-old widower who died after a road collision in Woodbridge has been named by police as Peter Grimer.

A 21-year-old man has admitted his involvement in an attack in which two teenagers were stabbed with a “Rambo” style knife in Ipswich.

This weekend sees the launch of Ferry Fest, a new three day family arts festival at Felixstowe Ferry which is looking to have the coastal community buzzing with a raft of events that will include live bands, dance, a ceilidh, theatre, music and poetry, a musical review, craft stalls, beach activities, a photography exhibition and a pirate-themed day to excite land-lubbers of all ages.

A right-wing pro-Brexit group seeking to topple Theresa May has missed its target when trying to get Suffolk residents to sign up as Tory members – it wrote to Labour agent John Cook urging him to “Unite the Right!”

New format for Ipswich Defeat Dementia 2018 fundraising walk

A woman from Rushmere St Andrew is celebrating after Suffolk Highways agreed to repair roadworks close to her home that were causing her driveway to frequently flood.

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