Somerton 17 May; Banbury & Deddington 19 May 19

Somerton Village Hall, 17 May 19

Gospel Bell had a busy week, beginning with a return to play in Somerton Village Hall at the regular social evening for locals. We played a 70 minute set and about 40 minutes in, the socializing turned to dancing and singing. Thank you to Naomi and team for a warm welcome, we always enjoy our trips to Somerton.

Our ‘ready to play the blues’ pose, Somerton Village Hall

Banbury Friendship Festival (BFF), 19 May 19

For the third year running, GB was asked to play at this delightful, cross-cultural event. This year, the venue was the Bridge Street Community Garden and the theme was ‘sustainability’. In previous years we were asked to play for 20-30 minutes but were delighted to have been asked to play for a full 60 minutes over the busy luncheon period from 1-2pm. The weather was fine, though we played under a gazebo (just in case!) and with the use of BFF’s PA system. This coupled with a good turnout – Donald, Jackie, Sean, Susie, John, Troy, David, Toni, David, Richard and Jay meant that we attracted a lot of attraction and immediate participation by the many young children who danced at the front, some accompanied by their parents. As ever, it was a joy to play at and support this event and several organizations came over after we’d finished playing to ask us to play at their events! Our grateful thanks to Sue, Judith and the entire BFF team for organizing this unique festival and making us feel so welcome.

At the Banbury Friendship Festival the band was big – too many of us to fit in one photo – apologies to Jay (saxes and flute) missing from stage left and Troy (Cajon) obscured by the dancers! (Thank you Hannah for your beautiful festival photos!)

Deddington Church, 19 May 19

Every year – immediately after our Banbury Friendship Festival slot, we head over to Deddington to play at the annual ‘teas in church’ event. This is the only regular afternoon tea gig that we play and the atmosphere and acoustics in the church ensure that it is a special event. Our thanks to all who drank their tea and ate cake slowly so that they could join in and to the vicar Annie for hosting us and Heather and her team for making us feel so welcome – thanks too for the delicious tea and cake!

Relaxing after our hour-long set with Revd Annie and her music-loving dog. Thank you Judy and Fiona for taking photos