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Carlisle Unity Festival – Building Partnerships for Unity in Our Communities

AWAZ Cumbria, Carlisle One World Centre, Op Shops, Bespoke Minds and other partners are looking forward to hosting the fourth Carlisle Unity Festival this Saturday 13th July 2019 between 10:00am and 4:00pm.

The event’s organisers wish to invite members of the Carlisle public to come along to this free event, to take part and enjoy celebrating our community together, remembering that ‘we have more in common than that which divides us’. This year AWAZ Cumbria are hoping for their biggest and best year, with their new theme: “Building Partnerships for Unity in Our Communities”.

Community organisations, public sector and volunteer groups will have an information stand under a gazebo or marquee, in the city centre. Groups will deliver workshops and perform in the city centre. There will also be an international coffee morning with a taste of cakes from around the world in the Old Town Hall.

Highlights will be entertainment from Blue Jam Arts, Prism Arts, Glass City Presents, Speakeasy Writers and Poets, multicultural dance groups, Laughter Yoga and Carlisle Clog and Sword dancing. Jason the Juggler will entertain children and families with performances and balloon modelling and there will be face painting, craft workshops and a raffle.

The organisers have announced two new additions to this year’s programme:

Carlisle Unity Walk

This special walk will take place at 10:00 am and will be led by the High Sheriff of Cumbria, Marcia Reid-Fotheringham, with support and direction from members of Blue Jam Arts.

The walk will talk place from outside The Lanes at the bottom of Scotch St. to the Market Cross.

All stallholders and performers will be invited to send participants to take part with a banner or flag, if you have one to spare. Drums will be supplied to walkers with spare hands or bring one from home if you like!

They will walk up to the main area and form a circle, following which the High Sheriff will conclude the walk with a short speech and the Mayor of Carlisle Cllr Marilyn Bowman will open the festival, Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Peter McCall will be a keynote speaker.

Aftab Khan, Chief Coordinator of the Festival and Development Manager AWAZ Cumbria said: “Carlisle Unity Festival brings diverse communities, groups and organisation together to showcase their talent, enthusiasm, commitment and services for creating unity within community and making Carlisle a welcoming place for all.

“We are very excited about this walk, which will celebrate all the community organisations and activities taking part in the Carlisle Unity Festival and hope very much that you will be able to join us.”

Carlisle Unity Festival Treasure Trail

A local artist Susan Cartwright-Smith has created Carlisle Unity Festival Treasure Trail. All stallholders will be given a piece of a jigsaw puzzle which members of the public will be invited to collect and then to assemble into a 28-piece puzzle. All names of the completed puzzle makers will be entered into a draw with the prize being a tour and cream tea at Carlisle Airport sponsored by the Stobart Group.

The Carlisle Unity Festival aims to appeal to all communities, ages and abilities. They have funding confirmed from the Cumbria Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, Tesco’s Bags for Help, National Lottery Awards for All, Cumbria County Council, University of Cumbria, Unison and Carlisle City Council with whom we are working closely on the organisation of the day.

Police and Crime Commissioner Mr Peter McCall said: “Carlisle and indeed Cumbria is famous for hospitality and welcoming people of all nations, beliefs and backgrounds.  The Unity Festival in Carlisle is a fantastic way to celebrate diversity and how we can all just get on with each other with respect.

“It is important that we continue to support equality for all and doing it in the form of the Unity Festival in the heart of Carlisle is a great way to show our commitment to this great cause.  I’m pleased to be supporting AWAZ, the Unity Festival and everyone involved, I hope folk will join in what will be a great Cumbrian celebration.”

The annual festival raffle will offer a top prize of a voucher for Virgin Trains Tickets as well as vouchers for local restaurants, cafes, shops and many other fabulous prizes.

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