As the nation goes on lockdown to help in the fight against Covid-19 people are looking for different ways to keep themselves entertained at home. With bars, pubs and restaurants closed, residents of Smith’s Dock on the North Shields Fish Quay are inspiring others with their unique approach to keeping busy by creating a silent light disco to reach out beyond their four walls.
Organised by Smith’s Dock residents Scott Miller and Graham Moralee, the disco started when the friends began shining torches at night as a way of communicating during lockdown from the Smokehouses apartment buildings to the townhouses on the hill.
Scott Miller, a freelance fitness instructor comments: “I live in the apartment buildings on the waterfront and Graham up in the townhouses so we were entertaining ourselves one evening just after the lockdown began by flashing torches at night. We’re all really friendly with one another at Smith’s Dock and quite often have parties and events in each other’s homes so things quickly escalated beyond shining our torches into creating a silent rave.
“We were missing our social events and parties so decided to have an isolation silent disco and get some lights going. We mentioned our plans on our community facebook page and on the first night we had lots of people up in the townhouses and apartments also join in. The Smokehouses have glass running all the way down one side so we could see everyone dancing with their disco lights flashing – it really lifted our spirits.”
On the second night, the residents decided to get their silent disco up and running at 8.30pm after honoring the nationwide call to applaud NHS workers helping to keep the nation safe.
Graham Moralee, fellow resident commented: “Smith’s Dock was just lit up like a Christmas tree by all the flashing disco lights and we had so many apartments and houses involved that honestly, it really helped to show off how wonderful our community is here. We’re all dealing with such restricted social contact and a complete change to our normal everyday life so it was great to connect with other people in a fun way to dance off some of the worries and tension that has been building recently.
“What better way to connect during social distancing than with music, dancing and laughter? We just hope more people can follow our example and shake off some of those isolation blues with a nightly silent disco to really improve the mood.”
Smith’s Dock is a residential scheme delivered by joint venture partners Places for People and Urban Splash. The development has transformed the former Smith’s Dock shipyard in North Shields with contemporary new housing, including townhouses and apartments from architects including George Clarke, ShedKM and SimpsonHaugh.
For anyone wishing to be part of the Smith’s Dock community a small number of apartments remain for sale at the Smokehouses, including two-bedroom apartments priced from £160,000 - £165,000 and a three-bedroom duplex at £270,000.