Children holding packed lunch

Children living in the Melbourne area enjoyed a series of free activities and entertainment at the Picnic in the Park festival.  

The week-long event provided fun and games for children and families living in Melbourne during the summer holidays and brought the local community together.  

What activities were available? 

Throughout the last week of July, children took part in activities in Melbourne Park, with something new and exciting to try each day. There were plenty of sports, games, bouncy castles, and arts and crafts tents to get creative.  

Local entertainer Mr B provided party games and magic shows and there was even a 40ft inflatable assault course. Children made smoothies powered by a special exercise bike, as well as seed planting and clay modelling with staff from RHS Hyde Hall. A healthy packed lunch was given out each day for children eligible for the free school meal scheme. It included fresh fruit, sandwiches, a packet of crisps and drink.  

Arts and crafts sign
Arts and crafts station in Melbourne Park

Help from local partners 

Local partners were at the event such as Chelmsford CVS and Kids Inspire to talk to families about volunteering opportunities in Chelmsford and let them know about other free services available.  

Essex Childcare and Wellbeing, who are based in Melbourne, shared information about the services they offer, such as mother and baby classes. Active Chelmsford helped to fund the festival. 

Hotbox Live, a local community trust organisation that creates live music entertainment, played songs throughout the week and helped bring the festival to life.  

The summer holidays can be a busy time for parents and guardians. We also recognise the extra challenges families are now facing through the cost-of-living crisis and want to support them however we can. ‘Picnic In The Park’ ensures that children eligible for free school meals don’t go hungry during the holidays, so it’s doubly important to provide free and fun sessions like these, to help take the pressure off a little, and bring a little joy to children, right on their doorstep.

Councillor Rose Moore, Cabinet Member for Greener and Safer Chelmsford

Appearance from the Mayor of Chelmsford 

The Mayor of Chelmsford also paid the festival a visit, speaking to families and local organisations.

The Mayor of Chelmsford packing the children's lunch
The Mayor of Chelmsford helping to pack the children’s lunch

It was brilliant to see the community come together for a picnic and games in the park. It’s wonderful that things like this exist in Chelmsford, and to see so many people get involved is what it’s all about.

Councillor John Galley, Mayor of Chelmsford
Mayoress of Chelmsford helping to pack the children's lunch
Mayoress of Chelmsford helping to pack the children’s lunch

Find out what other activities are taking place in Chelmsford over the summer holidays. 

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