Catalyst has awarded a £5,000 grant to support volunteers at this year’s Hanwell Hootie Music Festival that’s taking place on Saturday 7 May.

The Hanwell Hootie is the largest free one-day music festival in London and is a not-for-profit community event. It attracts 30,000 visitors each year and up to 400 community volunteers work to support the festival.

Catalyst’s £5,000 contribution will help fund the event’s volunteer tent – a space that provides refreshments and a rest area for the hundreds of volunteers who make the festival a fun, safe and fantastic day out.

The grant has been awarded through Catalyst Communities and is one of the ways in which housing association Catalyst, a subsidiary of the Peabody group, works in and around the neighbourhoods in which they provide homes to support the wider communities and promote local heritage.

The first Hanwell Hootie was held in 2013 and was set up to celebrate the life of Jim Marshall, the founder of Marshall Amps, who opened his first shop in Hanwell in 1960. The business now has their headquarters in Bletchley near Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire.

The festival has a packed and varied programme of music and comedy through the afternoon and evening, along with a fantastic range of international food and drink, set out across a number of locations within walking distance of each other and well-served by public transport.

Sahil Khan, Director of Community Strategy, Partnerships and Funding at Peabody said:

‘We’re delighted to help support the volunteers who make The Hanwell Hootie Music Festival happen – it’s a great free local event that has something for everyone and celebrates the heritage of a now well-known business and brand that has its roots in Hanwell. We’ve been creating great places and building affordable homes in the London Borough of Ealing since 1963, and we know this is always a popular event with residents and colleagues and an opportunity for the community to come together.

‘The festival wouldn’t be what it is without the army of volunteers who put in hours of time both front of house and behind the scenes. There’s a huge range of volunteering opportunities available that not only help make the event the success it is, but help local people gain new skills, meet their neighbours and make connections. A huge thanks to volunteers from all at Peabody for what you do!

‘We’re also planning to continue our work with the Hootie team with a ‘Drastic on Plastic’ multi-generational upcycling workshop for the Hanwell community over the summer.’

Faye Hamilton, Director of The Hanwell Hootie Music Festival Community Interest Company, said:

‘The festival is run entirely by volunteers but of course we pay all the musicians and our suppliers so we are extremely grateful to companies like Catalyst who provide financial support to ensure we can finance the festival. Our volunteers put in an amazing amount of time and effort with many going beyond their initial remit. It’s a great bunch of people and as well as learning new skills, many new friendships are made.

‘The community love having this vibrant festival on their doorstep where we showcase talented emerging artists of all genres. There are fifteen venues including two parks, a church, pubs, cafés and a busking bus. There really is something for everyone!’

For more information, visit the festival website.