Grooves on the Green
15 & 16 July 2023
11am to 7pm
ASHLEY Cross is counting down to a full weekend of brilliant food, drink and music as the annual Grooves on the Green community festival provides a welcome boost for Poole's suburban village.
With the festival season in full swing following a glorious Glastonbury, Grooves on the Green organisers are predicting Dorset's longest running community festival - on Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 July - will be "one of the best ever".
"Everyone's in the mood already and Grooves is such a fantastic day out, people have been booking tickets and building a whole weekend around coming to Grooves - it's going to be one of the best ever," says Jan Crump, who started the festival in 2000 to provide a summer focal point for the Ashley Cross neighbourhood.
"Grooves is a real community event with everyone pulling together to make it happen, so when we reopen the Green to the public at 7pm, all the bars and restaurants are open for after parties - it's the atmosphere that makes Ashley Cross so special."
This year, Grooves on the Green has brought in even more food stalls and bars to ensure there is plenty of locally produced food and drink for hungry and thirsty revellers. On the menu is international cuisine from around the world including Mauritius, Greece, Mexico, India, China, Germany and the USA, as well as home grown dishes and not forgetting festival favourites ice cream, candy floss, cakes, sweets and treats.
Drinkers will find a Pimms and cocktail bar, Purbeck Cider Bar, 3 Amigos Tequila Cocktail Bar, Conker Gin Bar and the Salcombe Gin and Rum Bar, as well as Ashley Cross’s favourite pub The Bricklayers on site. For those who fancy a craft ale there’s Palmers Brewery, Hop Back Brewery and local microbrewery, Way Out Back; while Groovers in search of some comfort will find a VIP bar, seating and bathroom facilities at the famous Groove Garden.
On-stage the grass roots music line up is introduced by Britain’s Got Talent semi-finalist Allan Turner-Ward with appearances from festival stalwarts Pronghorn, the rabble rousing folk rock concoction of Black Water County - now celebrating their tenth anniversary - and a rare outing for Volatile Agents, the medical marvels whose line up includes doctors, surgeons, theatre medics and a member of the judiciary.
Later in the day, festival favourites The Mother Ukers can be found at the Grooves after party in the Brickies.
A cornerstone of the festival's success is its family offer and the Entertainment Stage is home to a variety of special shows suitable for all ages from Mr Merlin and Okey Dokey Dragon, to the amazing 'Bubbleologist' Richard Welsh; while fundraising at Grooves in recent years has seen more than £35,000 raised for Diverse Abilities Plus to continue its amazing work supporting children and adults with physical and learning disabilities.
"Grooves brings so many people out," adds Jan. "It's where Ashley Cross comes to hang out, chill out and celebrate the community spirit we're famous for - from young families new to the area, to well established locals, and those who come in search of a great couple of days out, everyone's welcome - and the party carries on into the evening as well."
Grooves on the Green runs from 11am on Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 July with bars closing each day at 7pm when the park will be opened to the public again.