It’s officially summer. The line up for the Bedford Park Festival has been announced. Top of the bill is Pirates of the Caribbean actor Kevin McNally (photographed with Keira Knightley) being interviewed by Susannah Simon. He is about to be on TV appearing as Captain Mainwaring in three lost episodes of Dad’s Army, He’ll be talking about that and the highlights of his career, including roles as King Lear at Shakespeare’s Globe and Tony Hancock on radio and TV.
Actor, writer and director Andy Nyman will open the Green Days weekend, the fete on the common opposite St Michael & All Angels Church, which signals the start of the festival, at 11am on Saturday 8 June. Currently starring at Tevye in the acclaimed West End production of Fiddler on the Roof, he has appeared as Winston Churchill in Peaky Blinders and also created the cult hit Ghost Stories, now on at the Lyric Hammersmith.
Stars of stage, screen, poetry and music
Among the stars of stage, screen, poetry and music in this year’s festival (the 53rd) are poet Imtiaz Dharker, hotly tipped this week to be the next Poet Laureate. Imtiaz will be the guest speaker at the annual poetry evening, hosted by Chiswick poets Anne-Marie Fyfe and Cahal Dallat. Cahal will also be celebrating the life and work of poet WB Yeats, one of Bedford Park’s more famous residents, in Land of Heart’s Desire: the WB Yeats Walk.
Music highlights in St Michael & All Angels Church include the return – by popular demand – of the London Welsh Rugby Club choir; a special D-Day concert by the London City Orchestra commemorating the event’s 75th anniversary; a serenade for flute and strings by internationally acclaimed flautist, Paul Edmund-Davies, violinist David Juritz, Grammy-nominated guitarist Craig Ogden and virtuoso cellist Adrian Bradbury; and a lunchtime concert by The Oxbridge Organ Duo, Benedict Lewis-Smith and Julian Collings, on St Michaels’ magnificent pipe organ.
Photographs above: Andy Nyman, Imtiaz Dharker and David Juritz
Photography competition and exhibition
This year The Chiswick Calendar will be running the Photography competition and exhibition and entries will be shown on The Chiswick Calendar website as well as in the St Michael & All Angels Parish hall. Email us at email@example.com if you are interested in taking part.
Tickets on sale this week
The Photographic Exhibition and Competition is one of the festival’s regular favourites, which also include the Bedford Park Summer Exhibition, showcasing more than 100 works by local artists; Artists at Home, in which over 50 local artists displaying their works; the Bedford Park Walk and the Bedford Park Open Gardens, featuring a dozen of the most beautiful gardens in the world’s first garden suburb. Other events include TS Eliot’s Murder in the Cathedral, to be performed by the students of St Paul’s School in St Peter’s Church, Acton Green; a house concert and a wine-tasting and supper in beautiful Bedford Park houses; a concert by the St Michael & All Angels Choristers; and Haydn’s Nelson Mass, celebrating the church’s 140th anniversary serving Christ in the community. Tickets go on sale this week at the Festival’s website: www.bedfordparkfestival.org.
Each year, thousands of people enjoy the traditional village Green Days Fête and Craft Fair, which is great fun for all the family. The weekend includes a bandstand with live music and entertainment, fairground rides and games, food & drink, a craft fair with 20 exhibitors offering a wide selection of high-quality craft works, many different types of stalls, competitions; a Family Cycle Zone, which offers cycling advice, free bike maintenance and a raffle to win a bicycle; and an Electric Vehicle Zone. For children, there’s a five-a-side football tournament and a fancy dress competition (theme: Musicals), as well as face painting, games and activities in the children’s corner. There are also great competitions over the weekend, including a chance to Win-A-Meal for two at one of more than 30 local restaurants; the High Roller Tombola and the Champagne Lottery. The Photographic Exhibition and Competition will be on display in St Michael & All Angels Parish Hall throughout the weekend. Come and meet The Chiswick Calendar at our stall on the green.
The 53rd Bedford Park Festival – ‘Chiswick’s favourite fortnight’ – runs from Friday 7 June until Sunday 23 June 2019, with the Green Days fete and Craft Fair on 8 & 9 June. It will raise money for the work of St Michael & All Angels Church and its charities for 2019: The Upper Room, which feeds and supports people in need in west London; The Amber Trust, which helps blind and partially-sighted children fulfil their musical potential; and WaterHarvest, which helps bring clean water to remote and arid villages of rural India. The Bedford Park Festival is run by St Michael & All Angels Church, supported by dozens of local people and businesses. It was set up in 1967 to foster a sense of community, celebrate the arts, and raise money for urgent repairs to the Church. Since then it has raised hundreds of thousands of pounds for charities.