July 16 and 17 are the dates for the first ever Crowfest Music Festival. This is an exciting development for the local music scene and will offer music lovers a chance to hear some of the very best local original music talent on a professional festival stage right in the very heart of Crowborough.
The event is free to attend and offers a family friendly atmosphere. Crowborough Town Council are funding the entire cost of staging the two-day festival and have been working closely with local charity Local & Live for advice on the event plan, staging, sound and security.
Crowfest has been accepting artist submissions via its website since late January 2022 and has already had hundreds of applications from a wide range of local soloists and bands. The event will also have plenty of activities for kids and a wide range of local stall traders. I had the pleasure of recently interviewing Mia Kelly who works for Crowborough Town Council and is one of the main organisers of Crowfest….
Mia, let’s start by you telling us a little about you and your position at Crowborough Town Council…
I am the Events Coordinator at Crowborough Town council. I started working for the council in June 2021. My role is to organise and deliver the council’s events programme. The council runs a variety of things – from popular annual shows to one off things. Part of my role is to continue to run and improve the current events programme and to develop new ideas for potential new events.
So how did the idea for Crowfest come about?
The idea came from Peter Cunnington who is the council’s current Operations Manager. Peter identified a gap in the market for this type of community music event in the Crowborough area.
Where is the event being held?
It will be held at Goldsmiths recreation ground in Crowborough. The recreation ground is made up of fields, football pitches as well as a running track. Over the weekend of July 16 and 17 July Crowfest will run from 1pm to 9pm and is free to attend. On the top field at Goldsmith’s, you will find our large stage where a wide range of bands will perform throughout the day into the evening. The running track will be transformed into a child-friendly play area and a market where there will be space for 102 pitches. There will also be an Eco Hub located here which will engage its visitors in a range of activities to increase environmental awareness. The bottom field, will feature a wide range of performers showing off their individual skills!
How would you best describe it?
It’s essentially a reworking of our previous summer fairs here in Crowborough but with a strong musical emphasis too. There will be a wide range of activities to suit people from all backgrounds across all ages. As well as incorporating many elements from our previous years’ summer fairs Crowfest will provide visitors with a wide range of new exciting elements.
How important is Crowfest for the local community and why?
After a couple of years of on-and-off global lockdowns, the need to gather and experience collective cultural joy feels more important than ever. Crowfest is a great opportunity for the community of Crowborough to come together and celebrate its town’s great music talents as well as creating a feel good factor and boosting the local economy by creating a platform for local vendors and business to promote themselves.
Do you have any local food and drink traders at the event?
Yes absolutely! There will be plenty of food stalls to choose from including independent local traders like pizza from Doughbro, ice creams from Southern Counties, pastries from Crumbs and Treacle, crepes from Delaney’s, burgers from Chuckaburgers, Thai Street Food from Nong’s Kitchen and doughnuts from Maxime Doughnut Hut. There will also be a range of beverages from The Blue Anchor Pub.
The music programme will focus on grass roots original acts. How do you feel this benefits the identity of Crowfest as a new event?
As this is an event for Crowborough and its local residents, it’s important to celebrate its local talent. It’s important to give fledging artists a platform to showcase their talents. The council’s events programme aims to work with local businesses and to support its local talents and their development.