Residents of Knowle West will be coming together this weekend to celebrate their local neighbourhood.
Knowle West Fest is a free annual festival that takes place on Filwood Broadway.
In response to the increase in hate crimes across Knowle West, the festival will be a celebration of the area’s diversity and an opportunity for local people and neighbours to meet and have a fun day together.
Saturday at 2.30pm Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees will join local residents to launch 200 biodegradable balloons in support of the families and the victims of recent events.
Marvin Rees said: “I am delighted to be able to join the people of Knowle West to help celebrate the diversity in their community. I would encourage all local residents to pop along on Saturday to meet your neighbours and see some of the best Knowle West has to offer.
“We were all shocked and saddened by the recent hate crime in the area, which I know does not reflect the place or its residents. It is great to see the neighbourhood coming together to condemn these actions and create an inclusive environment for everyone. Together we are clear that any form of discrimination or hate-crime will not be tolerated in our city. It is right for us to peacefully challenge harmful views and actions, showing everyone that Bristol is a diverse and welcoming city which is made better by its wide range of residents and visitors.”
The event also includes performances from local musicians, food stalls, arts activities, and a Health Zone featuring games, sports challenges and free health checks.
The festival is organised by Knowle West Together – a group of local organisations working with residents to improve the area and celebrate the range of cultures, experiences and opportunities that exist there.
Vicky Beckwith, Chief Executive of charity re:work is coordinating this year’s Knowle West Fest.
She said: "Each year the Fest gets bigger and better. It is an opportunity to celebrate the vibrancy, talent, friendliness and humour of the Knowle West Community. It is also a chance to find out what is going on in and around the estate and to enjoy a great day out with friends and neighbours.
"The balloon release was a response from local residents to the recent racist attacks. It is a way of loudly proclaiming that the actions of a couple of isolated individuals does not represent the beliefs of the neighbourhood. We believe that we are made stronger by the influence of other cultures."
Knowle West Fest will take place on Saturday 20 August from 12-4pm.