Eddy takes us higher

Electric Avenue's new sign on top of Boots

Electric Avenue’s new sign on top of Boots

Eddy Grant paid tribute to Brixton and its people when he presided at the official opening of the newly refurbished Electric Avenue and its giant illuminated sign tonight.

Eddy Grant

Eddy Grant

The singer, whose 1983 hit Electric Avenue boosted Brixton at a difficult time, joined London mayor Sadiq Khan and Lambeth council leader Lib Peck in counting down to the switch-on of the new sign.

Earlier, Brixton Market Traders Federation leader Stuart Horwood had introduced a man without whom the could never function and who, he said, works tirelessly to make sure it does.

key_2016-10-17-19-02-20Lib Peck presented Michaeal Johns, who runs the market traders’ toilets, with the ceremonial key to the market in recognition of his work.

Earlier, pupils from Archbishop Sumner school’s steel pans had entertained crowds which grew to fill Electric Avenue despite a cloudburst.

After the ceremony, Eddy Grant stayed behind for some time to meet fans, sign autographs and pose for selfies.

Then he was due to head for the Prince of Wales for more celebrations.

London mayor Sadiq Khan marked Black History Month with a visit to the Black Cultural Archives on Windrush Square before the Electric Avenue event – seen here with BCA deputy director Doreen Foster, chair Dawn Hill, vice-chair Miranda Brawn and director Paul Reid

London mayor Sadiq Khan marked Black History Month with a visit to the Black Cultural Archives on Windrush Square before the Electric Avenue event – seen here with BCA deputy director Doreen Foster, chair Dawn Hill, vice-chair Miranda Brawn and director Paul Reid

 

Lib Peck and Sadiq Khan watch as Eddy Grant counts down to the switch-on

Lib Peck and Sadiq Khan watch as Eddy Grant counts down to the switch-on

 

Crowds filled Electric Avenue

Crowds filled Electric Avenue

crowd_750_2016-10-17-19-18-14

 

Security was light and friendly

Security was light and friendly

 

Lib Peck and Eddy Grant listen to the mayor

Lib Peck and Eddy Grant listen to the mayor

 

Fans were out in force

Fans were out in force

 

A ceremonial key to Brixton market for Michaeal Johns

A ceremonial key to Brixton market for Michaeal Johns

 

One lucky child gets to meet Eddy Grant

Eddy Grant with his great nephew Jax after the switch-on

 

Eddy Grant stayed behind for signings and selfies

Eddy Grant stayed behind for signings and selfies

 

It was still Brixton Market – traders carried on trading with a brief pause to listen to Eddy Grant

It was still Brixton Market – traders carried on trading with a brief pause to listen to Eddy Grant

 

Entertainment from Archbishop Sumner school steel pans

Entertainment from Archbishop Sumner school steel pans before the main event

Brasstermind braved the worst of torrential rain to entertain growing crowds

Brasstermind braved the worst of torrential rain to entertain growing crowds

Pictures Alan Slingsby & David Wilcock

About the Author

Alan Slingsby moved to Brixton just as the 1981 uprising began. His nearest pub was the Effra and nearest off licence the Frontline — long gone in an earlier wave of closures of treasured community establishments. Has edited newspapers for the National Union of Students and National Union of Teachers. Now makes a living designing magazines and books and anything else people will pay him for.

3 Comments on "Eddy takes us higher"

  1. Chenelle October 17, 2016 at 10:46 pm · Reply

    The Lucky child as stated above is my son, and he is Eddy Grants great nephew.

    • Alan Slingsby October 17, 2016 at 11:00 pm · Reply

      Hi Chenelle. Thank you for telling us. If you want to let us know his name, we’ll put it in the caption.

      • Chenelle October 17, 2016 at 11:06 pm · Reply

        His name is Jax. Thank you

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