Published on October 15th, 2023 | by Gaelle Finley



The ‘Handsworth Socials’ evenings at St Andrews Community Centre* have slowly but surely evolved into the go-to place for the Handsworth ‘alternative’ scene.

On Saturday 14th October, the extremely talented Mabowunje Harrison enthralled all with her homage to Nina Simone. The tickets were sold out and a waiting list had to be formed – rumour has it that there might be a repeat of the show in the future, for those who missed out.

Her vocal range, her warm personality, her dedication to Nina and what she represents (‘She is still relevant today’) ensured Mabowunje had a rapt audience who erupted in whoops of appreciation after each song.

The evening started with a set by Handsworth Community Choir who admirably set the scene.

There was also food, drinks, a raffle and campaign stalls, ensuring a lively atmosphere in both halls.

‘I love going to these, it’s so relaxed and I’m sure to bump into some friends’.

Going from strength to strength, the next event is Lou Kilbride and Mike Bethel who will perform a Joni Mitchell 80th birthday tribute on Saturday 18th November. There is no doubt that this will be another social to remember.

Handsworth is so lucky to have such a vibrant creative scene, a welcoming venue for events, and a dedicated team of volunteers who make sure that Handsworth Socials are a big success. With thanks to the super heroes Mogs and Tim, long may it continue.

See photo gallery below.

* Handsworth Socials: Mogs Russells and Tim Hollins ( – ably assisted by Claire, Gaelle, Hannah, Helena, Jacqueline, Min, Naomi, Sarah, Walter, and all who helped set up the rooms and clear up.

* St Andrews Community Centre: 2 College Road, Handsworth, Birmingham B20 2HX (0121 554 2437)

Photo Gallery:

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