Re-instate the dance stages (for public dancing) at the Thames Festival
  • Petitioned Boris Johnson

This petition was delivered to:

Mayor of London
Boris Johnson

Re-instate the dance stages (for public dancing) at the Thames Festival

    1. Barry Press
    2. Petition by

      Barry Press

      London, United Kingdom

In this London Olympic year, there should be some healthy activity open to the public at the Mayor's Thames Festival.

In previous years, that has been supplied by several "dance stages", areas in which music, and some lessons, were provided, for anyone to join in (jive, swing, tango, etc).

They were very popular, attracting both experienced dancers and first-time dancers.

They were also very popular with spectators: at good sites, the number of spectators was limited only by the availability of space (you can see the crowds in and in the video at the bottom of

Until a few months ago, the lead photo on the festival website was still the 2009 jive stage photo,

The 2012 festival organisers have announced that "we don’t currently have plans for any dance stages this year".

So there will, for the first time, be no healthy activities for the London public to participate in (except of course for walking).

Mr Mayor, this is YOUR festival, please keep London healthy and happy, and re-instate the very popular dance stages!

Recent signatures


    1. Boris Johnson may read Petition

      Barry Press
      Petition Organizer

      After exactly the statutory 28 days, the "Culture Team" has responded as follows, again relying on the independence of the trust:

      Dear Mr Press

      Thank you for your response.

      I appreciate your comments below and the petition you have raised. I will ensure this has been forwarded to the Mayor's Office.

      However, I would like to reiterate the points made by Lieran Stubbings in her previous email to yourself. Notably, that while the Mayor supports the Thames Festival, it is independently organised by the Thames Festival Trust, who hold the artistic purview and organisation of the festival.

      The Mayor advocates for health inducing participatory events for Londoners, and sees dance as a great opportunity to do so. That is why the Mayor supports dance activity through Big Dance, the biannual festival of dance events that take place across the whole of London, and the UK. For more information please go to

      Yours sincerely

      A. Neal
      The Culture Team

    2. Boris Johnson fails to read Petition

      Barry Press
      Petition Organizer

      The Petition, with 437 signatures, and copies of about 120 comments, was posted to the Mayor on the Monday before the Festival.

      An email reply has been received from his staff from which it seems clear that the Mayor has not actually read the Petition.

      It does not address the principal points of the Petition.

      (Curiously, it does not even mention the Petition, nor the comments accompanying it.)

      It mentions the reduced space available this year, without addressing why the Dance
      Stages should have borne the WHOLE effect of this.

      It applies the criterion of cost-effectiveness to the Dance Stages, but not to any of the 'artistic' features … "If you have any constructive ideas as to how this favourite feature of the festival could be cost effectively maintained …"

      The full text can be read at (it is too long for this News section), together with my reply,

    3. Reached 250 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Malcolm Hurrell BROMLEY, UNITED KINGDOM
      • over 1 year ago

      It makes the whole place alive and enjoyable, even those who can't dance watch enthusiastically.

    • denise ravenhill LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
      • almost 2 years ago

      More joy! less misery

    • myles woodhouse READING, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      love to dance

    • Leanne Gardner LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      I have just taken up dancing and it is awesome. Everyone should have the opportunity to experience it outdoors in London.

    • Nigel Atterbury LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
      • about 2 years ago

      Is it not obvious; but not obvious to the organisers!!


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