Bungo in the Back Lanes: One of the great Glasgow community events returns this month

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The famous facades of Strathbungo have earned the area conservation status, but it is the cobbled back lanes which give the neighbourhood quite a different character.

The rambling lanes, the original granite setts we walk on, the less than upright brick walls are familiar, friendly, sometimes disgraced by the dumping of rubbish or the foraging of an urban fox – but they’re ours!

To celebrate the uniqueness of the area, the annaul neighbourhood festival, Bungo in the Back Lanes returns next month.

The event began in 2000 (and before that the summer Bungo knees-up took place in Queen’s Park) with the aim to bring the back lanes to life and put them to use.

Chairman Jane Carolan explained: “It all came about around 20 years ago. We were looking to hold a festival or some kind of summer celebration.

“In the area where we live, there wasn’t anywhere where we could host it, unless we used Queen’s Park, which we didn’t think was an option.”

And then someone has a gread idea of using the back lanes...

“I’m not sure whose idea it was to use the back lanes,” Jane continued. “But it was a great idea and it gives people the opportunity to come together with their neighbours and it’s just worked out beautifully.”

With almost two acres of black lanes, there is plenty of space for stalls, music, playgrounds and much more.

Bungo in the Back Lanes encourages everyone to open up their back gates, set out their stall and sell their wares – whether it’s home baking, barbecued burgers, craft goods, or junk from their attics which becomes someone else’s treasure.

The Strathbungo Society brings in some added value with live music, beer gardens, tea gardens and all the fun of the fair.

Previous years have seen lemonade stalls, races and antiques in a shed plus many other intrepid ideas.

Jane said: “There is a wide variety of stalls from bric-a-brac, jewellery and the local allotment’s plant stall is always extremely popular.

“There’s also face painting and a playground for children, and bars and music for the older kids among us!

“There really is something for everyone.”

And once the fun is over, it’s time for a giant clean up as residents and the Council joining forces to remove graffiti, uplift rubbish and strim the vegetation that springs eternally between those cracked bricks and paving stones.

“We’re always looking for volunteers,” Jane added.

“So get in touch and come along!”

Each year, Bungo in the Back Lanes has attracted more and more people, and more and more households have opened their doors and taken part.

We’ve Bungoed in the Park, we Bungo at the Bells, but Bungo in the Back Lanes is the biggest and best event.

Bungo in the Back Lanes 2019 takes place on Saturday, June 22 from 1pm to 5pm.

Get involved:

Bungo In The Back Lanes is a big event for a small community group to put on. Volunteering before, during and after the event doesn’t need to be a chore. So if you’ve ever thought of getting involved, make this the year you do.

Here’s a starter list of tasks that organisers need help with, if one catches your eye, get in touch:

• Gazebo crew – 20 people needed to work in crews putting up gazebos (and taking them down again). Turn up in Marywood Square/Queen Square Lane at 9am on the day. Bacon rolls often appear miraculously if that helps (other rolls are available!)

• Poster crews – 10-20 people needed to put up posters around the area (and, you guessed it, take them down again once the day is over).

• Stewards – Eight people needed to act as Stewards on the day, donning a hi-vis vest and helping folk find their way around.

• Stall holders – Not planning a stall of your own? Why not spend half an hour to help man one of the Society’s stalls or lend a hand in the tea garden? The profits from these help to fund staging the event.

• Eagle-eyes – We want to make sure the lanes look as clean and tidy as possible on the big day. Could you volunteer to wander your own lane in the week leading up to the event and let us know if there are any problems to deal with?

For more details on how to get involved, email bitbl@strathbungo.co.uk.

For further information on the event, visit Bungo Blog or Strathbungo Society