Shoreham's literary charity, Wordfest, has been awarded a £10,000 grant by Conservative controlled Adur District Council to help boost its activities, bringing in more young people and different communities to celebrate the power of books and literature.
Wordfest, which has been running since 2011, attracts thousands of residents and visitors to a series of events showcasing literature, poetry and the written word in all forms
To help Wordfest, a charitable organisation run by volunteers, continue its success in reaching out to communities the District Council has awarded the £10,000 grant with an additional £5,000 towards a children's festival for Adur, organised in partnership with various arts groups.
With support from the Council, there will be summer evening performances of Shakespeare's classic farce, Comedy of Errors, on Shoreham's Coronation Green on 15th and 16th June 2018.
Families and children will also be catered for in the special week-long Adur Children's Arts Festival in August and a further weekend in November.
This year's events will culminate in a week-long celebration in October at which journalists Kate Adie and Jenny Murray as well as renowned poet Ian Macmillan will be just some of the speakers and performers on show and performances of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet will be staged.
Using the grant Wordfest will also run pilot projects, such as all-ages creative workshops and will offer longer developmental opportunities to build links between children and people of all ages, and between different communities.
There will be creative writing workshops to increase educational achievements, skills and aspirations enabling people to shape their own future, maximising new economic and social opportunities.
Linking with schools, Skyway Gallery, Adur Arts Trail and others Wordfest will also build links across all the arts, with the support of community groups and businesses, to develop a programme of cultural events across the district.
The programme will contribute to community health and well-being, education, raising aspirations and will complement economic development in bringing others into the district, increasing its reputation as a centre for arts and innovation. Wordfest will work with the District Council's Community and Wellbeing teams to develop the programme.
Leader of Adur District Council, Cllr Neil Parkin, said:
“We recognise that Shoreham has a thriving cultural scene and we recognise the fantastic efforts put in over the years by trustees and volunteers to build Wordfest into the success it is.”
“Now our contribution will allow the festival to reach out beyond both Shoreham and traditional audiences to inspire whole new groups in the delight in the written word.”
On behalf of Wordfest trustees Rosalind Turner said:
“We are thrilled to receive this support from Adur District Council, which will help to boost the range of cultural activities we are able to organise in the coming year.”
“We have been growing as a voluntary organisation over the last seven years, and with the Council's support we can now expand, with a particular emphasis on work with children and young people, schools and extending activities within the community. With the Council's support, Wordfest will be organising creative workshops with children and older people in schools, and arts activities in Lancing and Fishersgate.”
“The charity trustees are grateful for the Council's recognition of the considerable amount of voluntary effort generated into the arts in Shoreham and beyond over the past seven years. There are over 30 people actively involved with Wordfest, and we also rely on support from many other partners in the area. The Council's commitment will help us all to flourish and reach the parts we haven't reached before.”
For the full programme of Wordfest events go to the Shoreham Wordfest website.