Festival spirit takes hold of St Leonards once again

ST LEONARDS Festival and Big Day Out is this year bigger than ever and offers a varied and colourful programme of free entertainment.

Opening festivities tomorrow (Saturday) in their inimitable style will be Dende Samba Drum Troupe, parading around the area from 11am.

Then from noon, events will take place along the St Leonards seafront, by Marine Court, and along Kings Road, as well as in Warrior Square.

On the main stage from noon through into the evening will be acts including young artists from Respond Academy, Rhythm Section, ‘Stax of Motown’ Show, and The Stag Bluegrass Band, as well as dance performances, drumming from Dende,and a DJ set from Remi Vibesman, who is also acting as compere for the day.

Eat Global Village, in Warrior Square Gardens will be serving up food from all over the world, including African, Spanish, Indian, and Turkish delicacies.

An array of entertainment for younger festival-goers will be on offer in the Family Area, such as crafts workshops with Radiator Arts, face painting, and Punch and Judy show.

There will also be plenty of games from the Active Hastings and Play Team, including balancing beams, children’s assault course, storytelling, and music. Wandering entertainers will be weaving their way through the crowds. Look out for the Ukelele Troupe, Gizmo Choir, Health and Safety Gone Mad, and jugglers.

For one day only, there will be a sandy beach at St Leonards (complete with buckets and spades), by the Beach Cafe, along with a barbecue and street entertainment.

At the Art on the Railings art market by Marine Court, Hastings Arts Forum members will be selling their wares, and there will be workshops and events at the Arts Forum itself, including storytelling and print-making for children with artist Emily Johns, who currently has an exhibition at the gallery.

This year, the market in Kings Road has more than 40 stalls, with stall-holders from St Leonards and beyond.

Specially designed St Leonards shopping bags will be on sale at the Seaview Project stall.

At the Kave Gallery, in Kings Road, will be an afternoon of art jumble and music, including live performances from Unicorn Dad Vrs Robodad, Oliver Cherer, No Middle Name and Rory Mansfield.