The Big Virtual Lunch FAQs

Why is The Big Lunch going ahead?

The Big Lunch is the UK’s thanksgiving weekend for neighbours and communities - a time where we come together to celebrate community connections and get to know one another a little better.

That’s why, after careful consideration, we think it’s important that The Big Lunch still goes ahead on 6-7 June. There are different ways you can join in this year depending on what works where you live, and is safe and inclusive for you and your community. Now more than ever, we need to make time for each other and, whilst things are a very different for us all this year, community spirit is shining bright.

Your Big Lunch could be online from your kitchen table, over the phone with a cuppa, or a family picnic out in the garden where you can wave to your neighbours – the most important thing is to get people talking and celebrating connections old and new.

Is it safe to have a Big Lunch at the moment?

We all need to follow the current government guidelines about social distancing and gatherings of people, but there are still safe ways you can have a Big Lunch.

Instead of throwing open our doors and everybody getting together in person, this year we’re encouraging everyone to get creative and join in either digitally, over the phone or at a safe distance on your doorstep.

Is this The Big Lunch 2020 or can we do it face to face later in the year?

The Big Lunch is held on the first weekend in June every year. Whilst we can’t hold street parties or large get-togethers this year, on 6-7 June we’ll be celebrating community connections and getting to know each other better in other ways. If you can’t join in then, do your Big Lunch when it works for you.  Who knows, maybe sometime in the future we will be able to come together safely and enjoy The Big Lunch face to face like in previous years, but at the moment we just don’t know when that might be possible.

We’ve put together a selection of ideas on how you can join in 6-7 June to be part of things this year. Then together, lets watch this space for future opportunities.  

Why can’t we do a Big Lunch like we normally would?

Covid-19 has had an unprecedented impact on our day-to-day lives and because of this there are restrictions and guidelines in place so we can all stay safe. In order to keep communities safe and support the health and wellbeing of everyone, including the most vulnerable in our communities, we need to do The Big Lunch differently this year. We advise everyone to follow Government guidelines on social distancing and think about how to make your Big Lunch as inclusive as possible for those who may still need to isolate as well as those who may not have access to technology. 

When will it be safe to do a street party again?

We really don’t know what the future holds at the moment. We all have to follow government guidelines to make sure we protect ourselves, our communities and support our health services. Keep an eye on government guidance about what kind of activities it is safe to take part in which you can find here. You can also keep up to date with our monthly newsletter.

Can I still get a Big Lunch pack?

At the moment we aren’t posting out any Big Lunch packs but you can register your details if you are hosting a Big Lunch of any kind.  To help this year, we have put together a set of open access downloadable resources including invitations, posters, social media graphics and lots of ideas for things you can do no matter how you decide to hold your Big Lunch.

How can we share food?

The Big Lunch is about celebrating community connections and getting to know each other a little better. Sharing food is a great way to do this, and there are still creative ways this can be done, even online or over the phone. 

What if my neighbours aren’t online?

We advise following all current government guidelines about social distancing and gatherings of people, but like the Clap for Key Workers you could invite neighbours to join in from their doorsteps and raise a cuppa. Whether its waving from your windows, people dancing in their own driveway or simply sharing a friendly postcard through neighbours doors to say hello - there are lots of lovely ways to connect with everyone.

Who should I do a Big Lunch with?

The Big Lunch is about celebrating community connections and getting to know each other a little better. You could use The Big Lunch to connect with your local facebook group, Mutual Aid group or neighbours on Nextdoor or take the opportunity to reconnect with people you have not been able to catch up with – colleagues, volunteers, local networks, sports and community groups. In fact this year you could invite anyone that you can’t meet up with in person – friends or family, near or far! It’s up to you. 

Your Big Lunch pack 2020 full of ideas, games and other resources are available to download here