Music festivals are a big part of Barking and Dagenham’s celebrations to mark 50 years since its establishment as a London borough this summer, and have attracted thousands to watch events such as folk legend and Barking native, Billy Bragg, performing at the Abbey Ruins.
More than 15,000 attended the two-day Barking Folk Festival, which took place in July. Bragg played a set which included pro-trade union anthem There is Power in a Union, as well as other political songs such as To have and have not, A New England and The Saturday Boy. The weekend also included morris dancers, circus performers and other musicians.
Around 8,000 came to the Roundhouse Music Festival at Central Park in Dagenham, which celebrated the borough’s musical heritage and the Roundhouse Pub, which was once the venue for performances from some of the country’s most famous rock bands, including Queen, Pink Floyd, Status Quo, Elton John and Led Zeppelin. The event featured local rock bands who took part in a battle of the bands competition. Tribute bands included homages to The Who, Status Quo, Pink Floyd and Queen.
The One Borough Community Day also proved popular, with crowds of almost 15,000. It featured a live airing of ‘Made in Dagenham’, sixties band The Tremeloes and Artonik’s Colour of Time, a music and dance show with explosions of colourful powder.
More events occured throughout the summer, including the Family Cultural Mela, which took place on Saturday 8 August in Barking Park.
To find out more about the 50th anniversary celebrations, click here
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