The Big Lunch is the brainchild of Eden Project pioneer Tim Smit. It intends to recreate the bygone tradition of whole communities congregating for festivities to celebrate a Royal or momentous national event with a street party. The party takes place in their own street or park and the Queens’s Coronation was just such an occasion. Then bunting was thrown up, tables were put out in the street, cakes and trifles were wheeled out, granny played the piano, party pieces were performed and people really had communal fun dressed in their Sunday best and party hat. Rover cleaned up the scraps.
Big sit down lunches may be out of fashion today in favour of light lunches and TV snacks. But hopefully The Big Lunch in Plymouth will usher in an annual event when family, friends and communities can sit down together for a leisurely long lunch close to where they live and revive the post-war traditions. Now it’s more a matter of choosing which party to join. You could even travel to the Eden Project itself.
Plymouth’s most illustrious venue for people to congregate is The Hoe. The large open space, the many historical associations and the fine panorama of Plymouth Sound all draw people to Plymouth Hoe. But the physical and geographical focal point of Plymouth is Plymouth Central Park and this provides an ideal venue for The Big Lunch because it is surrounded by residential flats and houses on all sides. This enables families to leave their car at home and walk to the Park. The Friends of Central Park are organising The Big Lunch for anyone who cares to join them in Plymouth Central Park. Thank you Eden Project for the idea!