A popular arts festival will not return to Eastbourne this year after organisers reveal they do not have enough funding or volunteers to hold the event.
The annual Eastbourne Festival – which celebrates art, film and theatre from around East Sussex – had been expected to return for its ninth year in July 2016.
But organisers Eastbourne Festival CIC say the increasing size of the event combined with a lack of funding and volunteer support has forced them to delay the festival until 2017 while alternative arrangements are made.
In a statement on its website, a spokesman for Eastbourne Festival CIC said, “Over the past few years the Eastbourne Festival has grown organically and has attracted some exciting professional events in addition to some excellent local contributions.
“Throughout that time all the organisation, which has involved a huge amount of work, has been carried out purely voluntarily by successive directors and volunteers to whom we are very grateful. We are particularly grateful to those who have provided sponsorship, either financially or in kind, which has been extremely helpful.
“The time has come where organic growth has reached its potential. To ensure future growth and success the “Festival must move to the next stage of development. This involves the provision of professional artistic direction, the establishment of annual themes and the ability to attract larger audiences by commissioning professional events.
“To enable this, the Festival requires formal funding and sponsorship and the ability to attract paid professionals.”
Organisers are inviting anyone who may be willing to sponsor a future event or volunteer their time to contact them at email@example.com.
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