Ramadan

Grand Iftar cancelled as 'health and safety comes first'

Liz Lewis

Broadcast Journalist

Scenes at the Grand Iftar 2019
BBC

One of the biggest cultural events in East Bristol has been called off because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The Grand Iftar of 2019 saw some 6,000 people gather to eat together on St Mark's Road in Easton.

The event was started as a response to the terror attack at the Manchester Arena in 2017 and allows Bristol's muslim community to share their faith and food with the city.

In a statement, Councillor Afzal Shah and Mohammed ElSherif - the principal organisers of the event - said: “In light of the unprecedented global health concerns, and following Public Health England's guidelines and mass gathering restrictions, it is with great regret that we have to cancel Bristol's 2020 Grand Iftar."

"We appreciate that you, and all attendees of Bristol's Annual Grand Iftar, were looking forward to an incredible event that celebrates Ramadan, Bristol's diverse multi-faith landscape, and we are disappointed that the efforts of our volunteers could not come to fruition.

"However, the health and safety of everyone has to be of paramount importance, and we appreciate all the measures being put in place by national and local government, and the exceptional efforts of the emergency services to keep our communities safe.”

"We look forward to warmly welcoming everyone to a very special Bristol Grand Iftar 2021".

Grand Iftar 2020 cancelled

Liz Lewis

Broadcast Journalist

People celebrate the Grand Iftar last year
BBC

Bristol's Grand Iftar has been cancelled in response to the growing coronavirus pandemic.

The street party in St Mark's Road, Easton, is part of the month-long Muslim tradition of Ramadam.

The 2019 event saw some 6,000 people share faith and food with the wider community.

The event has doubled in size each year it has been held.

Organisers Councillor Afzal Shah & Mohammed ElSherif issued a statement saying the cancellation game with great regret".

"We appreciate that you, and all attendees of Bristol's Annual Grand Iftar, were looking forward to an incredible event that celebrates Ramadan, Bristol's diverse multi-faith landscape, and we are disappointed that the efforts of our volunteers could not come to fruition.

"However, the health and safety of everyone has to be of paramount importance, and we appreciate all the measures being put in place by national and local government, and the exceptional efforts of the emergency services to keep our communities safe.”

Why are shops in Iraq stocking up on Scottish sweets?

Sweets
Farhad Haseb

A Scottish sweet manufacturer is seeing sales of its fudge and toffee surge in Iraq. What's feeding that growing popularity?

In northern Iraq, shops are rushing to fill their shelves with sweets. The Islamic holiday of Eid al-Adha, or Festival of the Sacrifice, is approaching - and it is an important part of the year for confectionery businesses.

In Iraqi Kurdistan, as elsewhere, the four-day festival which starts on Sunday is a time for celebration and feasting - and sweets are very much on the menu.

Read more

Faith, Fasting and Feasting – A Ramadan Special

Yasmin Khan and comedian Tez Ilyas talk food and fasting in Ramadan 2019
As Ramadan 2019 draws to a close, many British Muslim reach the culmination of a month of fasting during daylight hours. But that doesn't mean that food is forgotten. On the contrary...
 
In this programme, food writer Yasmin Khan celebrates the social, cultural and culinary rituals of Ramadan, the most holy month in the Islamic calendar. She speaks to comedian Tez Ilyas about celebrations with family and friends and a very memorable 'Happy Eid cake'. And in Bristol, Yasmin joins thousands of people coming together for a 'Grand Iftar', a vast street party of Muslims and non-Muslims, who have come together to share a meal with their neighbours once the sun goes down.

Presented by Yasmin Khan
Produced by Clare Salisbury
Is cutting down on food, sleep and distractions the secret to spirituality?
Is cutting down on food, sleep and distractions the secret to spirituality?