Hailsham Festival hailed a success by town dignitaries

Hailsham Arts Festival 2014 SUS-140818-124620001
Hailsham Arts Festival 2014 SUS-140818-124620001

This year’s Hailsham Festival of Arts & Culture has been well received by the public and hailed a success by the Town Mayor, as hundreds of people turned out to a wide variety of events.

The festival, which ran from Wednesday 10th September to Sunday 21st September, saw a steady stream of visitors to the town and had a varied programme of events to capture the attention of the public.

Visitors got the chance to attend a rich mix of art exhibitions, live music, theatrical events, children’s workshops and historical art talks, spread throughout Hailsham and surrounding areas.

Regular Festival updates, news and interviews were broadcast on Hailsham Festival FM (87.7), which also featured great music, lots of specialist shows and much participation from local people and organisations.

Exhibitions and workshop which made up the ‘Art Trail’ this year included glass, ceramics, metal and textile works from Sussex Coast Contemporary Glass, Traditional and contemporary stained glass from the Labyrinth Stained Glass Studio and an embroidery workshop provided by Redworks.

Also featuring was the Town House Collective - a group of artists with a learning disability from across East Sussex, of which much of the diverse work in their show was inspired by the Tour of Britain.

Music performers at this year’s festival included the newly formed Herstmonceux Jazz & Rock Community Choir which took part in the opening concert on Saturday 13th September, the popular three-piece Memphis Flyers Band who performed on the same day.

And The Wacky Band, a 30-piece community wind band which provided a feast of entertainment at Hellingly Church on Thursday September 18.

The usual displays of local artistic talent took place with the Art Trail, and the festival culminated in a fantastic finale event at Hailsham Pavilion on Saturday 20th September with traditional, Bhangra and Bollywood dance and live drumming from the Bhangracise Indian Dancers.

Town Mayor Councillor Jo Bentley said she was delighted with how the Festival improves year after year. She said: “Once again, the Festival was a great success and the local artists and entertainers rose to the occasion full of new ideas this year.

“There is an amazing wealth of artistic flair in our town and region and it is so rewarding to see such a large amount of people come and view the talent that Hailsham and local areas have to offer.”

“I would like to thank everyone who took part in the festival for providing some first class culture and entertainment and a special thank you must go to the organisers who have volunteered their time and put in a huge amount of effort behind the scenes to make the event possible.”

“The festival truly marks a highlight on our town’s events calendar year on year.”

Festival co-organiser Jim Tipler said “We have built on the success of the 2013 festival, but we are learning lessons all the time. With the great support we have received from the Town Council, local businesses, the Chamber of Commerce, Hailsham Pavilion, Hailsham Festival 87.7FM, many other local organisations and of course the people in and around Hailsham, I think we are starting to put this festival on the map. I’m already excited about Festival 2015.”

For more information on the Hailsham Festival of Arts & Culture, including news updates and photo gallery, visit hailshamartsfestival.co.uk.