Now in its 13th year, the annual Notting Hill Mayfest returns to the streets and venues of the area next month, offering a full line-up of exciting events with something for everyone! What started as a small community festival centred around the popular May Fair is now a month-long, multidisciplinary arts festival – with music recitals, film screenings, children’s events, a tea dance, area tours, lunchtime concerts, talks and much more.
One of the best known events of the Mayfest, as mentioned, is the May Fair which will take place at St John’s Notting Hill on Saturday 9th May, 1pm to 5pm. One of Notting Hill’s best loved events, which has taken place annually for over 25 years, the Fair is well known for its traditional village games and stalls, music, Maypole dancing, a fancy dress competition and dog show. A true family event with something for all ages – including a vintage coconut shy, face painting and even a bouncy castle!
On Wednesday 6th May, Dr William Taylor – Vicar of St John’s Notting Hill – will give a big screen presentation of his recent three-month journey along the Silk Road, during which time he travelled light and stayed with monks and hermits. The evening will include music, dance, food and drink inspired by Silk Road. This will also be the launch event for THE SPACE at St John’s, which will showcase the new community, arts and business facilities within the church. More details on THE SPACE and its use can be found at www.stjohnsnottinghill.com/thespace/.
On Friday 15th May, the silent classic Steamboat Bill Jr (1928), starring Buster Keaton, will be projected onto the big screen at St John’s Notting Hill with music accompaniment by the church’s recently restored organ. This follows a screening of the classic film Wings (1927) last year in what was a sell-out show.
Other highlights of the Mayfest include Love Your Local Market tours of Golborne and Portobello Markets (selected dates); the Bach to Baby classical concert for adults, babies and tots (19th May); the Flores de Mayo/Santacruzan Parade, a traditional festival of the Philippines (30th May); and a Tea Dance that will feature a number of different ballroom dancing styles (23rd May). The Mayfest will also see another opportunity to climb the tower at St John’s Notting Hill (16th May) for panoramic views across the area.
There’s of course plenty more happening during Mayfest as well, and many events are free to enter (or very affordable indeed!). The Notting Hill Mayfest also showcases some of the best known venues in the area, including St John’s Notting Hill, St Peter’s Notting Hill, St George’s Campden Hill, The Gate Theatre, and The 20th Century Theatre, and it’s a lovely chance to experience a variety of cultural events at these locations.
For a full line-up of all the events taking place during Mayfest (and to book tickets, where appropriate), please see www.nottinghillmayfest.org.uk.
2015 Notting Hill Mayfest
1st – 30th May 2015