As part of this year’s Croydon Heritage Festival which took place from 20 to 28 June, The Whitgift Foundation commissioned a short film to celebrate the town’s famous past, present and future. The six minute film, entitled ‘A Tram Journey to Discover Famous Croydon’ follows two of Old Palace of John Whitgift School’s star pupils as they journey around Croydon by tram.
The film’s presenters Abigael Bamgboye and Zara Kesterton, members of the School’s History Society, begin their odyssey in the Old Palace, a bricks-and-mortar representation of history they know intimately. The two discuss Sir Christopher Hatton, a minister and one-time Lord Chancellor in Queen Elizabeth’s government, who is said to have danced his way into favour with the afore mentioned queen in Old Palace’s Long Gallery (now used as classrooms).
The second stop is Park Hill Park, where the pair meet Josi Kiss, the organiser of this year’s Flower Fairies Festival, run as part of Croydon Heritage Festival. The ‘festival-within-a-festival’ is focused on the life and work of Croydon born Cecily Mary Barker, the creator of the famous Flower Fairies.
From there we follow the pair to the Croydon Airport to find out about the historic record-breaker, pilot Amy Johnson, and the influence that the airport had on aviation in the first half of the 20th century.
The tour takes a turn for the modern with the meeting of Micheal Carlito Sprazzo, a local dubstep MC, who explains that the dubstep movement began in basement studios in Croydon.
Later in the film the girls get an enlightening behind the scenes tour of Fairfield Halls from John Spring, the charity’s Head of Marketing.
The pair finish up by meeting some of the performers from Apsara Arts, an Indian dance group, who take them through a short dance.
So, what did our presenters discover about famous Croydon? Famous Croydon is characterised by its rich and diverse history, heritage and culture making our town a unique and special place to live and work.
If you attended any of the events as part of this year’s heritage festival, we would love to hear your feedback here or if you are interested in taking part in Croydon Heritage Festival 2016, email as on firstname.lastname@example.org.