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Atmospheric night-time procession takes place in Southwark.

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A lantern procession organised by Southwark Council on Friday 11 December 2015 saw 300 local people take part and 800 watching as it wound its way around Blackfriars Road

Emergency Exit Arts (EEA) delivered this event, the aim of which was to bring residents, workers and local children together to celebrate the Blackfriars Road area in a time of transition and change.

Preparations

The event was preceded by free lantern-making workshops at Friars Primary, Charlotte Sharman Primary and St George’s Catholic Primary schools in the nearby area, as well as an open access workshop for all local residents at Blackfriars Settlement.Blackfriars -road -lantern -procession -puppet

During these workshops, children and adults alike created their own unique lanterns, each containing a special wish they had for the festive period, either contained as a poem or image.

The lantern procession

Participants were then invited to take part in a procession around Blackfriars Road  which was led by a giant Jack Frost mechanical puppet that wandered through the area, collecting people’s wishes as they brought their lanterns out on display.

The procession began at Friars Primary School with the stunning rhythms of the South London Samba Band echoing down the streets.

A grand parade - and mince pies

A number of local community organisations and landmarks were visited on route, including Diversity Gardens located at King James Street, which was transformed with fire torches and glittering decorations.

The gardens were an impressive setting for a large lantern of an elephant – a reference to the elephant that was taken across the frozen River Thames during the last Frost Fair in 1814. 

The procession wound its way through the environs of Blackfriars Road to Styles House on Hatfields where the Tenants Management Organisation members hosted a mince pie break before the procession continued. 

Finally Jack Frost and his lantern-bearing entourage visited the Blackfriars Estate where the evening culminated in a glorious finale of live music, food and artificial snow with silver sparkling fountains from Emergency Exit Arts pyrotechnics team.