Waltham Forest Echo

Waltham Forest Echo

Walthamstow Garden Party cancelled 'with no warning'

Local artists and creatives involved in the event were informed via email about a month ago

Hero for Walthamstow Garden Party cancelled 'with no warning'
The festival in 2019 (credit: Chloe Beale)
By Victoria Munro 25 March 2022

After eight years and six free festivals, the annual Walthamstow Garden Party has seemingly come to a sudden and unexpected end.After eight years and six free festivals, the annual Walthamstow Garden Party has seemingly come to a sudden and unexpected end.

Approximately a month ago, artists and creatives involved in the annual Lloyd Park festival, which began in July 2014, received an email stating it “will not be going ahead” this year.Approximately a month ago, artists and creatives involved in the annual Lloyd Park festival, which began in July 2014, received an email stating it “will not be going ahead” this year.

The free summer event was the result of a collaboration between Waltham Forest Council and the Barbican and saw 30,000 people a year enjoy music, dance, spoken word and local food and drink.The free summer event was the result of a collaboration between Waltham Forest Council and the Barbican and saw 30,000 people a year enjoy music, dance, spoken word and local food and drink.

Event organiser and DJ Dom Mandrell said he and many other local participants felt “deflated” by the sudden announcement, which came without “any discussion or warning”.Event organiser and DJ Dom Mandrell said he and many other local participants felt “deflated” by the sudden announcement, which came without “any discussion or warning”.

He noted that, in the early days, there had been talk of the community eventually owning and running the festival - an idea which has seemingly been abandoned.He noted that, in the early days, there had been talk of the community eventually owning and running the festival - an idea which has seemingly been abandoned.

A statement on both the council’s and the Barbican’s website reads: “The past two years have provided an opportunity for many of us to reflect on our priorities and to work together to reimagine what we do, as well as why and how we do it. A statement on both the council’s and the Barbican’s website reads: “The past two years have provided an opportunity for many of us to reflect on our priorities and to work together to reimagine what we do, as well as why and how we do it. 

“We are aware that the world looks very different now than it did back in 2019 and continues to be a time of real challenge for so many of us. We want to ensure that what we do is responsive and creates space for new ideas and positive change.“We are aware that the world looks very different now than it did back in 2019 and continues to be a time of real challenge for so many of us. We want to ensure that what we do is responsive and creates space for new ideas and positive change.

“We are delighted that the long-term creative partnership between the Barbican and London Borough of Waltham Forest will continue, and we are excited to see what will emerge through our continued collaboration.“We are delighted that the long-term creative partnership between the Barbican and London Borough of Waltham Forest will continue, and we are excited to see what will emerge through our continued collaboration.

“We’re grateful for the continued support from Arts Council England to help us with this next phase of our partnership.”“We’re grateful for the continued support from Arts Council England to help us with this next phase of our partnership.”