WemsFest is much more than just a voluntary arts festival. We organise a wide range of concerts, drama and comedy at venues in and around Emsworth and Westbourne throughout the year, and founded the annual Emsworth Beer Festival which in September celebrates its 4th anniversary (27th – 29th).
Our ethos is that if you live in a community then you should endeavour to contribute to your community and to that event we’ve staged more than 300 events since our inception in The Stag’s Head (Westbourne) in January 2011.
The latest programme of WemsFest events can be found on the ‘Events’ page. We are adding more all the time, so please check back regularly.
In 2014 we staged a massive commemoration of the 70th Anniversary of D-Day with a specially written outdoor theatre production, shops dressing their windows a la 1944, talks, and music thanks to a sizeable Heritage Lottery Grant.
Emsworth’s connection with P G Wodehouse is annually remembered and we’re working on recognising this with a statue. The demolition of the iconic gas holder was marked by projecting images onto it (prior to demolition!), and we were behind Emsworth becoming The World’s First Ever Red Nose Town in 2015 – raising over £15,000 for Comic Relief – working in partnership with Emsworth Business Association. We’ve had a long and happy association with African Night Fever and Yaram Arts by bringing a superb selection of African musicians to an area of England which experiences very little in the way of Cultural Diversity.
The venues we use range from the 90 capacity Brook Hall, atmospheric Chidham Village Hall (110 seats), Emsworth Sports & Social Club (140 seats), and Emsworth’s contemporary Baptist Church (300 seats). Artists we’ve presented include: Aly Bain & Phil Cunningham, Breabach, Djabel Cissokho, Ray Cooper, Guy Davis, Fairport Convention (acoustic), Fara, Imar, Kanda Bongo Man, Dave Kelly & Maggie Bell, Namvula, Pentangle, Ella Rundle, Martin Simpson, Tchad Limberger & The Budapest Gypsy Orchestra, The Dime Notes, Tunde Jegede, Hat Fitz & Cara, and The Red Dirt Skinners – this is by no means an exhaustive list.
We are a catalyst for arts activity and established the ‘Up Close and Personal’ series at The Spring in Havant, which featured Nick Harper, Charlie Dore, Chris Difford, the Ric Sanders Trio, Chris Jagger with Kit Morgan, and Dave Hatfield, Jeff Lang, Sean Taylor, Carol Laula, Eddie Martin, and Jaimi Faulkner.
We are currently working on a number of exciting projects which will engage with all ages and help promote our wonderful community, so watch this space !
Over the past couple of years we’ve lost a few people without whom WemsFest would not be what it is today. Our 2018 Festival was in memory of Julian Sluggett who was such a catalyst in bringing interesting theatre to the area and it’s a great shame that Rogues & Vagabonds’ is no more. Communities need catalysts and drivers like Julian – he is sadly missed. RIP Julian.
For further information about WemsFest please call 01243 370501 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To join our mailing list and to keep up to date with what’s going on, please email email@example.com. We promise not to send you any rubbish!
Buy your tickets
7 High Street, Emsworth, PO10 7AQ
Open Monday to Saturday, 9.30am to 5pm, payment by debit or credit card, cash or cheque
6 Lumley Terrace, Lumley Road, Emsworth, PO10 8AB
Cheques to ‘WemsFest’. Please enclose SAE, unless you live in Emsworth or Westbourne, as we’ll deliver them.
OR ONLINE: www.wegottickets.com(a small handling charge applies)
BACS: You can also pay by this method and collect your tickets on the night. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like use this facility.
Happy to be working with this supportive community magazine http://thevillagemagazine.co.uk