The Great Get-Together Colchester is a day-long event to celebrate the life and work of the late Labour MP Jo Cox.

The event is one of more than 100,000 commemorations being staged throughout the UK between June 16th and June 18th. Free of charge and open to all, the Colchester event will take place on Sunday, June 18th, and aims to bring the entire community together with a programme of family-orientated attractions, including face-painting and live music.

Running from 11am to 5pm, it will be held inside the gallery and on our back lawn. Confirmed acts thus far include the West End performer Lee Dillon Stuart, as well as public readings from the Mercury Theatre Young Company. Additionally there will be stalls representing a variety of local community groups, including SOS Bus Colchester, Festival Hair, Robin Cancer Trust, KYDS Youth Drama Society, Tenpin, Outhouse East and Age Concern Colchester.

There will be food for sale, including delicacies served by the ever-popular Syrian Café, set up by Refugee Action Colchester, and coffee and cakes supplied by Firstsite’s social enterprise café, We Walk The Line.

The event, which has been organised under the umbrella of the Jo Cox Foundation, takes its name from Cox’s call for national unity – ‘We have far more in common than that which divides us’ – made shortly before her death on June 16th, 2016. Other events will include picnics, street parties and iftar, the meal eaten by Muslims to break their fast during Ramadan. The foundation is hoping it will be the largest number of community events held since the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012.

Colchester’s commemoration will be opened by the Mayor of Colchester, Cllr Gerard Oxford, and MP for Colchester 2015-17, Will Quince, will give an address. The Bishop of Colchester, Roger Morris, will also be in attendance.

The event is supported by Colchester Borough Council, and was initiated by Cllr Tim Young. Others who have helped make the event happen include Annie Feltham, the Lib Dem deputy leader of Colchester Borough Council, Conservative Cllr Daniel Ellis, and Alexandra Berriman and Martin Russell of the Mercury Theatre.