THE coronavirus lockdown has not stopped people in Swindon building common ground between different faiths.

Swindon Interfaith Group is hosting a series of online sessions, talks and films this week to mark a UK-wide Inter Faith Week.

Activities kicked off with a virtual evening prayer service on Sunday, as well as a talk about faith and the environment last night. Quizzes and films will be on offer during the rest of the week which will run until the November 15.

Kenny Baxter, social media and communications secretary of Swindon Interfaith Group, said: “There’s so much division in society at the moment, whether it be because of Brexit or something political, or because of issues connected with the pandemic.

"It’s really important to us as people of faith and one organisation, that we bring people together as a community at this time.

“There are the more traditional sessions you might expect to see from a faith-based group but we’ve also got some more unusual things,” he added.

Swindon Interfaith Group has been going for 30 years has celebrated Inter Faith Week for the past three years. “We’ve always had the objective of bringing people together from all different faiths backgrounds,” said Kenny.

“The spirit of it is the togetherness and what we have in common and the common ground we can build between each other.”

Before the pandemic outbreak, interfaith week would normally involve visits to different religious sites.

Kenny said: “Usually we open it up to all the faith groups in Swindon and say what would you like to present, and in previous years we’ve had visits to the Hindu Temple or Sikh Gurdwara .

“But we are a bit restricted this year in what each faith community could offer us, so we tried to think of things that would be interesting and possible to do virtually,” he said.

Tonight’s event will be a quiz night.

“We hope that people will find something interesting in the different sessions, and perhaps learn something new,” said Kenny.

Martina Lewis, vice-president of the group, added: “We all have something that is the corner stone of most faiths, and that is love and respect for one another and all life forms.

"Now in these Covid times it is really important that we come together and make a difference as a whole instead of in different single groups.”

Visit and sign up to the mailing list or visit the group’s Facebook page.