Gallery: House of Wingz cultivate roots

As Black History Month drew to a close, House of Wingz opened their doors for a weekend of activities called Cultivating Roots.
DJ Simba playing Afrobeats

A Black excellence showcase, members of the community were welcomed into House of Wingz’s ever-evolving space on Back Reeds Road to engage in various aspects of Black Culture.

Community members braid councillor Paula Burdess’s hair while sharing information on hair care and products.

The weekend coincided with the studio opening up its ground floor level. The space is a collaboration with charity Live Like Ralph, which honours the memory of Ralph Roberts – a young Blackpool skater who sadly died in 2021.

Ralph’s House became a gallery space

Featuring a number of small ramps, the space acts as a new community skate spot and will host regular open skate sessions designed to help beginners build their confidence and to give more advanced skaters a safe and creative space to hang out.

Artist Will Durocher and music producer Nat Powers discuss Will’s exhibition in Ralph’s House – the newly opened skate space in House of Wingz

The space was occupied by artwork by Will Durocher who has a long association with House of Wingz and is responsible for much of the graffiti that adorns the studio’s walls.

Manchester rapper Oneda during her performance.
Carolene hinds delivering her lindy hop workshop

Throughout the weekend House of Wingz, a performing arts school which is run by married couple Sam and Aish Bell Docherty, provided free Caribbean food and welcomed a number of artists, creatives and activists to host their programme of events.

Aviel Lowndes hosted an activism workshop

Councillor Paula Burdess, a long-term friend and supporter of House of Wingz, helped programme the festival-style event.

DJ sets provided the soundtrack to the weekend

“Black History Month is as much about making history as it is about telling it,” she said. “It’s inspiring to see some of our brilliant local organisations hosting a variety of events across the town to celebrate the enormous contributions of black people to British society.

Children were given the opportunity to make music as well as seeing professionals perform

“It’s a time to celebrate the diversity of our country, whilst also giving the opportunity to talk about some really vital issues.

House of Wingz crew members taking part in an activism workshop

“For generations, people of African and Caribbean descent have been shaping this nation, making an extraordinary contribution to all aspects of our national, communal, and cultural life.

Dance workshops were held throughout the weekend

“Black History Month is also an opportunity for everyone to learn about the history and experiences of Black people in the UK, contributing to having inclusive communities and workplaces.

Crew members showed off their moves

“Blackpool Council stands resolute against racism and all forms of discrimination and prejudice wherever we encounter it.”

Main photo: Michael Omoruyi, Leon Dennis, Nikki Diamante and Yuty Dennis welcoming guests to house of Wingz

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