Take part in Chiswick’s month of festivals

September is busy month in Chiswick, with annual events Tidefest, Chiswick Book Festival, the Cookbook festival and now the launch of the piazza in Turnham Green Terrace for your delectation and entertainment, not to mention Chiswick House Dog Show at the end of the month. These are all community events run by not-for-profit organisations and they all run on volunteer effort. If you would like to take part and help out, they’d be glad to hear from you.

Tidefest – Sunday 8 September 2019, 10.00am – 5.00pm

‘London’s Family River Festival’ takes place at Strand on the Green on Sunday 8 September from 10.00am – 5.00pm. The annual event, now in its fifth year, is all about encouraging people to enjoy the River Thames. It’s a chance to try out all sorts of river activities – paddle boarding, river dipping, kayaking, and water games – and especially to introduce children to them.

Organiser Martin Salter says: ‘We have lots of different roles to offer throughout the day including helping with individual events and stewarding the site, staffing the information point, selling any unsold tickets generally wandering around being pleasant and encouraging people to join in and handing out programmes. We have walks – two foreshore walks with a mudlarker, a birdwatching walk with the RSPB, two photographic walks with Jon Perry and a wildlife walk with London Wildlife Trust. We have river trips leaving from Kew Pier which need a bit of help and kayak trips over to Oliver’s Island which need help on the island getting the public out of the kayaks and safely round the island.

‘We have visits to Lots Ait where African Queen was filmed and now has moorings an amazing collection of boats and wildlife, a boatyard and workshops. Lots of hazards to encounter so need a couple of watchful volunteers to shepherd the group safely. We are also showing two river films and having a talk about Chiswick Swifts at the London Museum of Water & Steam. We need help with checking people in, directing them to our room and generally making sure all runs smoothly. In return for any assistance you will hopefully have a great day and help a great community river festival. You will receive a meal voucher and a modest payment to cover any expenses and maybe learn something new about the river’.

If you would like to help out at Tidefest, contact Helen Wilding at H.wilding@thamesfestival.org

Chiswick Book Festival – Thursday 12 – Monday 16 September 2019

Former Mayor of London and MP Jess Phillips are among the guests at this year’s Chsiwick Book Festival. There’s a full programme of interviews and panel discussions on everything from AN Wilson talking about Prince Albert to Richard Briars’ biographer talking about the Good Life of the long-term resident of Bedford Park. There’s a quiz at the Griffin Brewery, the Local Authors’ evening at Waterstones, and the opening session at Chiswick House, but most of the events take place at St Michael & All Angels Church in Bath Rd. All require volunteers to take tickets and shepherd the audience to their seats. There may also be a certain amount of tea making and bar work involved. The perks of the job are that you get to hear some really interesting discussions from A list presenters and authors and that you get one free ticket to a festival event.

If you would like to help out at the Chiswick Book Festival, please contact volunteer coordinator Jane McCabe


Cookbook Festival – Thursday 12 – Sunday 15 September 2019

The Cookbook festival celebrates the love of cookbooks. The festival’s usp is that it is not just a book festival and not just a food festival, but a book festival where you can taste the recipes the authors are talking about. The organisers need people to help supervise cookery demonstrations and events in the marquees and at the street party in Turnham Green Terrace on the Sunday.  Expect to be lifting, carrying, washing up and helping out in the kitchen preparing tasters for the demonstrations. Not exactly glamorous work, but co-organiser Lucy Cufflin promises the atmosphere will be ‘jolly’ and promises excellent snacks to keep you going.

If you would like to help out at the Cookbook Festival, contact the organising committee through their website.cookbookfestival.org

Turnham Green Terrace Street Party – Sunday 15 September 2019, 11.00am – 4.00pm 

The party to launch the piazza on Turnham Green Terrace ‘Together on the Terrace’ is being organised jointly by the Cookbook Festival and Abundance London. While the Cookbook festival organisers are overseeing the massive community lunch which will be taking place all down the centre of the street, Abundance London is organising stalls, children’s activities, live music, community art activities and the unveiling of the new art work on the wall of the railway embankment at 1.00pm. The road will be closed to traffic all day and the minute the closure comes into effect in the morning, there will be a mad scramble to set everything up before the event starts at 11.00am. Abundance London particularly needs help putting up gazebos. If you would like to help out at the Turnham Green Terrace street party, please email Abundance London at info@abundancelondon.com

Chiswick House Dog Show – Sunday 22 September 2019, 11.00am – 4.30 pm

The Chiswick House Dog Show has now apparently become the biggest dog show in London. The cricket pitch is flooded with dogs of every breed and size with their owners on a fun day out, with competitions and displays in several arena, food, drink and a variety of canine related stalls.

Dog Show committee chairman Jan Preece says:

It’s always wonderful to have experienced volunteers come back but we also like to welcome new volunteers to help with what is now said to be the BIGGEST DOG SHOW IN LONDON! We need volunteers (aged 8 to 80) help with the following:

*      Setting up the Show (for early risers as this starts from 7.30 am)
*      On the Class Registration Desk
*      Bar Tenders (Over 25’s only please)
*      Stewards to help the day go smoothly and tidily
*      Bucket Rattlers/handing out programmes
*      On the Information Desk
*      Adult support on the Children’s Fun and Games Arcade
*      Help with clearing up the Show (from 4.30 pm onwards)

Please let Volunteer Coordinators Caroline, Debbie and Susan know if you are available to spare a couple of hours by emailing them at volunteer@chiswickhousedogshow.org.uk
Let them know what you would prefer to do (and any time limitations you may have) and if you have volunteered before, whether you have changed your mobile number; OR alternatively sign up on line at www.chiswickhousedogshow.org.uk/volunteer-sign-up

Regular volunteering

If you would like to volunteer on a regular basis, have a look at The Chiswick Calendar’s Volunteer Directory for everything from helping out at one of the charity shops to driving a minibus to take elderly people to lunch, or a spot of community gardening.

If you are an organisation which relies on volunteers and would like to be included in the directory, please email us at info@thechiswickcalendar.co.uk

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Citizens rock

See also: Making a difference