Events People

Residents in the Leys celebrate 20 years of Fry’s Hill with The Big Lunch

By John Charlton

The Leys celebrated community, with a Big Lunch at The Barn in Greater Leys on Saturday 9th September 2017.

The Big Lunch is the UK’s annual get-together for neighbours. An incredible 9.3 million people joined the Big Lunch this year, that’s 14% of people in the UK. The Big Lunch sees people throughout the country set up bring-and-share lunches and forge stronger bonds with their friends and neighbours.

This year, thanks to Good Food Oxford and funding from Oxford City Council, the annual event returned to The Leys with 47 people taking part. People came along with food to share, or just turned up and joined in. Oxford City Council’s Mixing Pot was in attendance – a way for people to share favourite recipes and cooking tips. For those wanting to be more active, there was apple pressing, a smoothie bike and even a bouncy castle! Everyone who came along met someone new, and everyone felt the Big Lunch had improved the neighbourhood and helped them feel more connected to the community.

Hannah Fenton, Manager of Good Food Oxford said “The Big Lunch was a wonderful way to get over our usual shyness and reserve and get to know our neighbours over some shared food. The event held on Saturday 9th September was a great chance for everyone in The Leys to get together. Plus there were plenty of fun activities for children including apple pressing, a smoothie bike and even a bouncy castle!”

This year, the Big Lunch celebrated 20 years of Fry’s Hill, the second phase of the Greater Leys development, now managed by Catalyst Housing Ltd and Greensquare Group.

Neighbours Mr and Mrs Cole, and Mrs Clarke, were some of the first residents to move into the new development, and are celebrating 20 years of living in the area. Mr Cole said “We get on really well, it’s really important to get to know your neighbours. I recommend it.”