In June each year, The Big Lunch encourages millions of people across the UK to come together for a few hours of community friendship and fun. The Big Lunch is the perfect recipe for having fun in your local area, feeding community spirit.
Now in its ninth year, the annual get-together for neighbours is set to be bigger than ever as The Big Lunch forms part of The Great Get-Together, supported by charities, faith groups and other organisations, which will see festivities extend over a full weekend.
The event is expected to be the biggest of its kind since The Big Jubilee Lunch in 2012 and will see people come together with friends, neighbours and others they don’t yet know for street parties, picnics barbeques and bake-off competitions.
A 2016 study found that nine million people in the UK suffer from loneliness, more than the population of London. Having fun and enjoying food is something we all have in common making The Big Lunch the perfect recipe for connecting with people. Bringing communities together, reducing loneliness and isolation and helping to make a difference locally is at the heart of what The Big Lunch is all about.
Peter Stewart, Director of The Big Lunch, said; “Supported by the Big Lottery Fund, The Big Lunch brings together people of different ages, backgrounds and religions. It has no agenda other than making communities more connected. That’s why we are thrilled to be able to come together with the Jo Cox Foundation and lots of other groups to get even more people involved for 2017 by putting The Big Lunch centre stage as part of The Great Get-Together.”
Jamie Oliver commented; “There’s nothing better than a good get-together with friends, family and amazing food. The Great Get-Together takes it to a whole new level! Food connects us to the best things in life – it breaks down barriers, and gets people talking and sharing happy times like nothing else. This is an awesome initiative, and I’m really proud to add my support.”
Last year communities came together for The Big Lunch across the UK in all shapes and sizes with over 90,000 events held and 7.3 million people taking part. A community garden party was held on the Isle of Wight and a get-together for neighbours living in the Lockner Estate in Hackney were among the many thousands of small and large scale events held in 2016.
The Big Lunch works because people can take the idea and use it in the way that works best for them where they live. However big or small, and whatever the theme, the result will be the creation of stronger and happier communities, which is good for the whole of the UK.
For people interested in getting involved in The Big Lunch this June, free packs are now available from www.edenprojectcommunities.com/thebiglunch. These include invitations and posters to adapt for communities as well as lots of ideas and info to help get the ball rolling.