Streets were buzzing with the spirit of carnival as children with special needs took part in a  procession.

Charity Community Focus Inclusive Arts Centre moved into their new home in Friary Park, Barnet, and organised the samba-themed event to celebrate their new chapter.

The carnival started at Sainsburys, in North Finchley, at 2pm on Friday, August 29, ending at the Tally Ho Arts Centre further along up the road.

Funded by Barnet Borough Council’s short breaks scheme, they worked with artists from TaruArts as part of a summer programme to help them make friends and boost their confidence.

Over two weeks, 13 children and teenagers aged ten to 19-years-old made hand-made costumes, carnival mask using recycled drinks cartons and a towering mascot named Dragster.

The yellow, black and green dragon, made of tissue paper and cardboard, was a star attraction as people from the community stood outside to watch him go past.

They also fashioned drums using buiscit tins, cling film and plastic bottles to create Brazillian-style music.

Lili Barcroft, the arts co-ordinator at Community Focus, said: “It was the perfect first project for us to deliver with Friary House.

“It was so amazing to see the parade along the road. I could see how uplifted local people who were lucky enough to stumble across it were.

“We’ve got a new home, in a beautiful park, and it has given us a fresh start and new lease of life, so now we’re really reaching out to the community to find out what we can provide.”

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