Stars and local community celebrate launch of 'Stories of Brent’ film
Brent celebrities, local school children, community organisations and residents of Brent attended the premiere of ground breaking new film, ‘Stories of Brent’ at the Brent Civic Centre on Friday 17 June.
The premiere featured a question and answer (Q and A) session on the theme of ‘building stronger communities’ with an all Brent panel including Councillor Muhammed Butt (Leader of Brent Council), Tim Blanc (Vice Chair of BHP Board), Liz Mitchell (Lead Singer, Boney M), Rachel Yankey (Professional Footballer) and AJ King (Kiss FM, DJ). As well as the Q and As, there were performances by young talent from Capital City Academy in Harlesden. As well as the film premiere, the event was designed to be a celebration of Brent and the talented people who live and work in the borough.
Stories of Brent is a short, community-based documentary film celebrating the things that make Brent special and telling the stories of the people, communities and history of the borough. It brings together residents of all ages to talk about their memories of living in Brent and to share why they all love where they live.
Stories of Brent is part of the drive to instil a sense of pride in the community and encourages residents to take ownership of the borough and the opportunities available. The film was produced and co-funded by Brent Housing Partnership (BHP) alongside their repairs contractor, Oakray. The film is also part of the Brent Council’s ‘Love Where You Live’ campaign.
As well as local people and organisations, the documentary showcases some big names from the music, television and sporting worlds who were all born and bred in Brent, and were proud to share their stories and memories of growing up in the borough that shaped and encouraged them to succeed.Some of these celebrities include those on the Q and A panel as well as Shaun Wallace (The Chase), Ashley Theophane (British professional boxer), Audley Harrison (former British professional boxer), Sameull Benta (actor; writer; producer) and Mr Cee (Comedian).
Liz Mitchell, Lead Singer of Boney M said: “I was born in Jamaica and came to live in Brent in the early 60s. This is my home. I have been around the world, but Brent really represents home as it’s where I grew up, where my parents lived, I went to school here and got married here…Brent has so much talent, there is a very positive energy in the air and it’s a very important place for music. When I was younger there were so many musicians, actors and performers who came from Brent.”
Ashley Theophane, British professional boxer said: "As a professional boxer I travel a great deal, but Brent will always be home wherever I am in the world. When I come back to visit, it’s always great to meet the locals, they give me that extra confidence by telling me that they are proud of what I am doing. This motivates me to keep working hard as I feel I am representing my area in a positive way.”
Rowann Limond, Interim Managing Director at BHP said: “Brent is one of the most diverse boroughs in London and this film is an important tool to help celebrate the borough’s spirit, as well as instilling pride, breaking down barriers and working towards BHP’s mission of building stronger communities.”
You can view the film on Youtube.