Artists and organisations that already help shape the local cultural landscape have been heavily supporting the council’s bid to become Borough of Culture 2019 and believe it could help make Ealing a ‘destination borough’.
Culture means so many different things to different people yet has the ability to bring communities together. Events funded and organised by community organisations and residents such as Hanwell Carnival highlight the importance and value of culture in the borough.
You’ll be surprised by what you find and how much culture Ealing has to offer
Ealing Council wants to create a year of culture that would not only benefit from eye-catching events for local people to enjoy but also attract visitors from the rest of London , the UK and even overseas.
Ealing News Extra caught up with two organisations that are backing the bid: Afghan Academy International and The Event Umbrella.
Alex Duncan from The Event Umbrella and Assiya Amini, co-founder of Afghan Academy International, were part of the workshops held to gather ideas about Ealing’s bid and are both excited about the prospect of becoming London’s Borough of Culture.
Ealing’s culture represents the UK’s multi-cultural society as one unit
The Event Umbrella has worked with the council for 10 years and runs the nationally recognised Ealing Summer Festivals on behalf of the council, along with overseeing all events that take place on council land. Assiya, meanwhile, formed the academy to promote art, culture and the heritage of Afghanistan within the borough.
“There is no one identity synonymous with Ealing, which is the borough’s greatest strength,” Alex said.
“Take the time to explore, learn and witness what there actually is out there and as long as you keep an open mind, I think you’ll be surprised by what you find and how much culture Ealing has to offer.”
The Afghan Academy International has found support within the borough as it raises awareness of their culture in others.
“Ealing’s culture represents the UK’s multi-cultural society as one unit and therefore can offer various opportunities to show community cohesion and cooperation which is particularly crucial during these times,” Assiya said.
There’s less than a month until boroughs have to submit their bid for Borough of Culture 2019 and both Assiya and Alex can see the importance of winning.
Assiya said: “For me, it would provide further opportunity to initiate and work on artistic projects, showcase Afghan art and culture, as well as to build strong partnerships with other stakeholders.”
Alex added: “Winning Borough of Culture would enable everyone who participated to make Ealing a ‘destination borough’ and it would be a fantastic reward for all those people that have lived and worked within the culture sector in Ealing for even longer than I have.”
Support Ealing’s bid:
There is still time to show your support for Ealing’s bid because you have until midnight Sunday, 26 November to let us know why you think this will be a fantastic opportunity for Ealing and the kind of things you want to see happening in the borough and to get involved in. Complete the short survey here.
If you have any ideas about what Ealing’s bid should involve or would like to join the Ealing Arts Forum, email email@example.com by the end of November.