BonkersFest 2007 on 2 June 2007 was a wonderful success. There was a celebration of music, creativity, poetry, and strangeness! Mad Pride UK was one of the sponsors. Here is a photo from the launch, the moment when bananas were launched from a large cannon.

BonkersFest 2007 began with the launch of bananas. Photo credit: Peter Lindley.

3 June 2007 – News Update

The below event, BonkersFest 2007, was a roaring success reports MindFreedom member Peter Lindley. Peter was able to take a photograph of the actual launch of BonkersFest, which used a cannon to launch bananas.

Below is the news release announcing the event.

10 May 2007 – News Release

Creative Routes presents the second annual


a one day arts festival celebrating madness, creativity and individuality

Saturday 2 June 2007

12noon to 9pm

Camberwell Green, Southwark SE5 England


Bonker BirdFrom 1279 to 1855 the Camberwell Green Fair, under the motto ‘Rare Doings in Camberwell’, featured a range of stalls, dancing and general merry-making.

The end came when the recently arrived, wealthy residents of the town clubbed together to buy the Green, abolishing the fair and turning Camberwell Green into a public park.

Thanks to Creative Routes, 2006 marked the return of entertainment on the Green, replacing ‘Rare Doings’ with ‘Mad Doings’. Bonkersfest!, which retains the merry-making and celebratory aspects of the original event, will continue to be a showcase of mad creativity for the whole community. Last year, over two thousand people enjoyed a day of inspiring performance, live music, poetry, art and sound installations.

  • Jo Brand opens BonkersFest! 2007 by firing a banana-laden cannon
  • Camberwell-based charity Creative Routes – as seen on the recent series of BBC 1’s Inside Out, BBC 3’s I Love Being Mad documentary (April 2006), Channel 5’s Mad for Poetry (October 2005), the BBC 2 series Balderdash & Piffle (11 May 2007), and featured in The Independent on Sunday magazine’s mental health special (18 March 2007) – is an award-winning interdisciplinary arts organisation run by, and for, survivors of the mental health system and of mental distress. It aims to dissolve the stigma of mental illness by encouraging the unique creativity of mad people, promoting mental well-being and the acceptance of individuality in the wider community.
  • Funny woman and former psychiatric nurse JO BRAND opens BonkersFest! at 12noon on Saturday 2 June by firing a banana-laden cannon.
  • Other special guests on the day include poet JOHN HEGLEY (also a former mental health nurse), comedian KIM NOBLE (of Noble and Silver fame), glamourous hostesses THE LAUNDERETTAS, and performance artist BOBBY BAKER with her show, Pull Yourself Together.
  • There’s live music all day in both a Big Top and Little Top featuring, amongst others, legendary former member of The Specials and Fun Boy 3 NEVILLE STAPLE, and hip hop collective LAZY HABITS, plus an array of local musical talent. There’s a theatre tent, an insect circus, fairground rides, acrobats, The Wild Hunt Bedlam Morris Dancers , London School of Samba, an audio visual tour of the local loony bin (The Maudsley), and loads more entertainment suitable for all the family.
  • In conjunction with The Young Vic and London College of Communications, Creative Routes also presents its MADVERTISING AGENCY: screenings of commercial breaks produced during workshops with LCC students, and theatre and film professionals.
  • Earlier this year, Creative Routes held a poetry competition entitled AWAY FROM THE FLOCK. Open only to the mad community, entries were judged by Poet Laureate and Creative Routes patron, Andrew Motion, and the finalist will be crowned BONKERSFEST! LAUREATE at the event.
  • There will also be various information and book stalls, plus therapy tents promoting mental well-being and the awareness of mental health issues.

Note to News Editors:

The campaign to save the Maudsley’s flagship 24-hour crisis emergency clinic is run by a coalition comprising three mad-led organisations, including Southwark Mind and Creative Routes, together with the Southwark community, and supported by Simon Hughes MP. As part of the campaign the Public Law Project (a designated charity) is representing a Creative Routes member to pursue court action against South London and Maudsley NHS Hospital Trust’s (SLaM) decision.

BonkersFest! is brought to you by: Creative Routes, MadPride, Young Vic Theatre, South London Gallery, Apples and Snakes, Continental Drifts, Nomadic Collaborations, Core Arts, Shape, Attitude is Everything, London College of Communications and Elisabeth Ssenjovu



Creative Routes members are available for interview Pics available on request; press enquiries to: Helen Maleed tel/fax: 020 7732 4624 mobile: 07986 235 855 email: helen@greendesk.demon.co.uk


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