Longsight Library was delighted to once again have fun, fun, fun with an actual in the library Fun Palace.

As an added extra this year we combined it with Older Peoples Day. As part of this we invited local organisation Women’s Voices to cater a tea party with delicious home made milky, spicy chai and a host of Baklava, Halva and the lightest most delicious cake in creation. They were joined by Rethink Rebuild giving everyone a boost with Arabic Coffee and dates. The front of the library was turned into a cafe with lots of hanging out, chatting, eating and drinking.

We had loads of activities for everyone to dip into and have a go. And by everyone, we mean everyone… age was not a limitation.

Wai Yin’s older peoples group drawing group provided a delightful activity that involved creating drawings that included Chinese characters.

Our amazing Code Club leader Saj ran a coding and playing with the robots Dot and Dash session as a way of launching Coding Club at the library. Code club was paused due to Covid and a lot has changed since Saj ran it pre-pandemic. Saj is no longer a teaching student, he’s now a Computer Science teacher in a Manchester Secondary School and his then teenage volunteer/helpers are all grown up and working now. This time Saj’s children came along and helped out on the day.

Prolific activity of the day award went to Anamika Cultural Group with their bag and bunting making activity. They were kept so busy that they had to draft in extra volunteers. At the beginning of the afternoon they had approximately 100 small bags and a whole heap of bunting blanks. 2 hrs later tired but happy Anamika informed us they had run out of bags and they had limited them to 1 per person . The bags and bunting were decorated with flag transfers and acrylic paint pens. There was non-stop ironing of transfers!

Other activities of the day included Matisse inspired collages with Beth from Creative City CIC, collaborative theatre games with Rebecca from Odd Arts, Happy, Safe & Free project with Stanley Grove Primary Academy, Öli and Beth from Central Library’s Henry Watson Music Library brought along instruments, local artist Annette supported people in an artistic exploration of charcoals and pastels and Grace who has recently set up an adults crafting group in the library brought along her card-making materials. Artist Tina Ramos Ekongo, led a poignant Black History postcard activity.

Everyone had such a lovely afternoon. There was approximately 500 people of all ages taking part. Creativity, curiosity and fantastic conversation flowed throughout.