Festival fun in the Norwich sun

Steve DownesSunshine, stalls and slapstick equalled miles of smiles at the weekend as thousands packed Chapelfield Gardens for the Norfolk and Norwich Festival garden party.Steve Downes

Sunshine, stalls and slapstick equalled miles of smiles at the weekend as thousands packed Chapelfield Gardens for the Norfolk and Norwich Festival garden party.

Two days of decent weather made the park a magnet for revellers, who relaxed on deck chairs or lounged on the grass as a host of events went on all around them.

Cider and fruit smoothies were the order of the day - adding a cooling touch to the proceedings.

The free, all-age event is one of the centrepieces of the 16-day festival, helping it to reach out to people of all tastes and from all kinds of backgrounds.

They were not disappointed, as they were treated to a mercurial mix of music, theatre and acrobatics.

Curious people crouched on the grass to get a glimpse of New Zealander Stephen Bain, who was holed up in a tiny Victorian cottage, where he somehow managed to play a miniature piano, serve tea and decorate the walls with notes and photos left by passers by.

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Meanwhile, Edmond Tahl caused a stir as he followed people around while playing music from his amplified suitcase and miming a series of misfortunes.

There was also the 'world's smallest disco', the 8ft by 4ft Miniscule of Sound, plus the colourful fun of Rock a Hula, which created a Fifties fusion of swing music and hula hoops.

Stalls included the ubiquitous hog roast, ice cream, smoothies, pick and mix sweets and asparagus.

t There was also a breathtaking display outside Norwich Cathedral, by 'bungee-assisted dance troupe' Wired Aerial Theatre, whose performers defied gravity with a series of mid-air moves and stunts.

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