Fire brigade keep revellers cool at Tonbridge Calling

The Mead School in Tunbridge Wells gave a professional level performance in the  ISA drama contests

REVELLERS came out in force for the free music festival Tonbridge Calling on Saturday [August 4] as the sun shone down on the town’s Racecourse sportsground.

The family event in the heart of town was made possible by donations and sponsorship from residents and businesses and was staged with the co-operation of Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council.

Around 1,800 people came along to hear a diverse selection of music performed by Foot Down, Wyatt Riot, Petty Thieves, Kung Fu Slipper and Salsadelic, local bands who all appeared free of charge. Proceeds from the event will go to charity.

Other attractions included the Kinetic Circus area where the public could try their hand at circus skills, the ever popular fairtrade clothes, jewellery and crafts stall from Bazaar, Wacky Faces face painting, local caricaturist Paul Gurney, yoga classes with Leila Madar, spoken word poetry from local poets Folio and Flitt and friends.

Sharna Rose ran a very popular hula hooping workshop and festival favourites Anaconda Belly Dance delighted the crowds with their stunning routines as well as passing on some of their skills to young and old in a workshop in the Field Tent.

We aim to bring the Tonbridge community together in a celebration of positivity powered by the people

In the glorious sunshine Kent Fire and Rescue Service helped to cool the crowd down with their fire hoses, and wellbeing therapists Sarah Howard and Silke Thistlewood provided soothing reflexology and massage mini treatments.

Caterers from Tonbridge Old Fire Station, Sulston’s Kitchen, Kay’s Kitchen, Thai Street Food, Little Brittany Crepes and Lord & Lady Muck served up a wide variety of food and drink, while locals donated cakes for the Tea Tent staffed by Fran Long and her team.

The feedback was very positive. ‘It was a brilliant event, thank you, you make our community so much stronger,’ said Annie Denny, while Kerry Oldfield commented: ‘What an absolutely awesome day – it exceeded all expectations.’

A team of 40 volunteers provided a dedicated service throughout the day, setting up the stages and tents, stewarding and litter-picking.

The festival was expanded this year to include an after-party at Fuggles Beer Café, where Hobo and the Hippies and Salsadelic continued the festival vibe.

Tonbridge Calling is organised by a core of six: Faydra Mitchell, Simon Partington, Sophie Quinnell, Ted Rogers, Fred Long and Mark Hood.

Mr Hood said: ‘We aim to bring the Tonbridge community together in a celebration of positivity powered by the people.’

PICTURE: BELLY FULL: Anaconda Bellydance teach revellers some exotic moves at the Tonbridge Calling music festival PHOTO: Simon Partington

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