A triumphant return despite the weather

A triumphant return despite the weather

Black Deer made a triumphant comeback at the weekend despite the challenge of extreme weather conditions.

The first day of the award-winning festival saw record high temperatures and glorious sunshine play second fiddle to the impressive array of acts who took to the festival’s numerous stages to entertain thousands of people who’d come to enjoy three days of great music, delicious food as well as kids’ activities all inspired by Americana culture.

They included Irish rocker Imelda May, acoustic troubadour Jake Bugg and the legendary indie dance troupe James.

By Saturday however heavy rain meant organisers were forced to pull the plug on the event at around 10.15pm, just as The Waterboys were playing the main stage.

Thankfully by the final day the rain was a distant memory as the sun shone again and hundreds more arrived on site to see legendary rocker Van Morrison take to the stage playing a medley of his greatest hits such as Brown Eyed Girl and Have I Told You Lately. Black Deer 2022 was a welcome return to the Tunbridge Wells’ music scene.

Americana event kicks off a packed summer of fun

While there are doubts over whether Local & Live will take place this year, the return of Black Deer is just one of a number of events planned for this summer that will see a packed entertainment schedule for Tunbridge Wells residents in the warmer months.

Next week (Saturday, June 25) sees the return of perhaps the town’s wackiest event, the Soapbox Stars Kart Race, where dozens of ‘pimped up’ soap box karts hurtle down a track in Dunorlan Park all in the name of charity (tickets: twsoapboxrace.com)


The Hop Farm in Beltring near Paddock Wood kicked off its summer season last week with concerts by 80s legends Simply Red on Friday (June 17), followed by gigs by former Jam frontman Paul Weller on June 18 as well as alternative rock band Keane on June 19.

Mark Harrison, promoter of LPH Concerts & Events that puts on the concerts said: “What an incredible weekend it’s been. We are thrilled to have brought three of the UK’s biggest acts to The Hop Farm with Simply Red and Paul Weller, and a very special hometown show for Keane.


“The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, and we’d like to thank the artists, the staff and crew, The Hop Farm for welcoming us here, and to each and every person who bought a ticket – we couldn’t have done it without you.”

Next month sees Westlife (July 1) come to the outdoor venue along with musical stalwarts Michael Ball and Alfie Boe (July 2) (tickets and info: thehopfarm.co.uk).

Pub in the Park (pubintheparkuk.com/tunbridge-wells) also returns on July 8-10 when celebrity chefs Tom Kerridge & Simon Rimmer will be joined in Dunorlan Park by Supergrass, Professor Green, Melanie C, The Feeling, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, ASWAD and Luck & Neat.

Also returning is the TW Fringe (July 4-17). Now in its second year, the Edinburgh inspired event will bring music, dance, spoken word and much more in a packed 12-day festival.

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