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First international castells exhibition to be held in London this weekend

The Castellers of London will receive the French group Castellers de París from the 17th to the 19th of June to celebrate the first international encounter for this traditional human towers. Both groups will offer performances in the city during the weekend, with the aim of strengthening the relationship between the groups and showing off human castles to an international public.  “We want to do regular international exhibitions, like the encounters between castells that are held constantly in Catalonia”, explained Marc Pujol, member of Casellers of London. International castells groups have been flourishing around the world lately, coming to London, Paris, Chile and China, and this event will be an attempt to establish a close relationship between the different groups worldwide. The activities will be held in different locations of London, one of the most expected to be held at London’s Old Spitalfields Market

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17 June 2016 10:45 AM

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Sara Prim / Laerke Saura

London (CNA).- London will host the first international meeting between human castles groups from London and Paris. The ‘Castellers of London’ have organised a scheduled weekend from the 17th-19th of June with activities related to human castles for participants and citizens, and exhibitions in the city with performances from the two groups. The activities will be held in different locations of London, like the Old Spitalfields Market, for example. The event in the British capital will be the first castells exhibition on an international scale, even though some smaller meetings have taken place before, for example between the Xiquets de Copenhagen, the Danish group in Copenhagen, which has already travelled to London to meet with the local group. The future holds big challenges, and the group in London is looking forward to hosting this kind of event as a tradition: “if we could meet once or twice a year, we would be very satisfied”, Castellers of London’s member, Marc Pujol, stated.


The fascination for castells on an international scale is not a new phenomenon. The New York Times, for instance, has written articles about this cultural activity, and cities worldwide like Shanghai have hosted castells exhibitions.

The most recent castells phenomenon worldwide is the growth of groups formed outside Catalonia in different cities such as London and Paris, but the tradition has also arrived in Australia, Canada, and China. In a lot of cases, these groups are formed by Catalans who study or work in another country and decide to create a castells group abroad, like the Castellers of London. The team was created more than a year ago, and is a collective of Catalan people that are looking for their home country traditions abroad, but also foreigners that are interested in castells.

The first international castells encounter: To establish bonds between international groups

The groups organised the first international castells exhibition to strengthen the relationship between Castellers of London and Castellers de París, and to show off castells to an international public: “the idea is to show our mutual support and to encourage more people”, said Marc Pujol, member of the Castellers of London. “We want to do regular international exhibitions, like the encounters between castells that are held constantly in Catalonia”, he added. Even though these international human tower groups are small, as well as the castles they make, they meet regularly to keep the tradition alive, and as Pujol said, “we enjoy doing what we do, and we are growing little by little”.

Last time the Castellers of London had a symbolic exhibition was during the Sant Jordi celebration (Saint George) in London. That day, in the Borough Market, thousands of spectators saw how the team had grown and showed off bigger and more complex castles compared to previous occasions. “That day gave us the strength to see that not only did we have to keep on going, but that we also needed to get together with other international groups and establish a network between us”, Pujol remarked.

The event in London will be the first castells exhibition on an international scale, even though some smaller meetings have taken place before, for example between the Xiquets de Copenhagen, the Danish group in Copenhagen, which has already travelled to London to meet with the local group. The future holds big challenges, and the group in London is looking forward to hosting this kind of event as a tradition: “if we could meet once or twice a year, we would be very satisfied”, Pujol concluded.

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  • 'Castellers of London' performing at London Borough's Market, this April (by ACN)