August 23rd, 2022.

The Newhaven Festival returns for its fifth year with a diverse lineup of events to keep you interested and entertained throughout September. With a thriving creative community and support from the Town Council, Creative Newhaven and Newhaven Enterprise Zone, this year’s festival offers something for everyone. Enjoy performances, talks and walks throughout the town, its industrial edgelands, and the landscape beyond.

At the Hillcrest Centre, leading art critic and tv presenter Andrew Graham-Dixon will give a timely and topical talk reflecting on the ways in which art has been shaped by social crisis and upheaval, arriving at a refreshingly different and more vivid sense of the history of art and its connection with the actual lives of real people.

More mid-life crisis than social crisis, the inimitable Miss Hope Springs brings her award-winning and hilarious West End show to the festival. Join the piano-playing comedy, cabaret, and chanteuse as she opens her somewhat battered suitcase of dreams to share musical mementos from her Ritz to the pits life.

Budding marine biologists get the chance to explore the underwater world just beyond the harbour - without getting wet! The Living Coast Undersea Experience invites you to discover the Marine Conservation Zone that runs from Brighton Marina to Beachy Head through a 360-degree interactive VR experience.

Drop into St Michaels Church and join a collaborative and fun drawing session with artists Johnsey, who has hosted mass community drawing events all around the country, or join eco-poet Kin’d & Kin’d for a poetry workshop upstairs at the RNLI building.

Bring your memories of Newhaven and Sussex dialect words and become part of Re-wilding the Word-hoard. Sculptor Jo Sweeting, writer Louisa Thomsen Brits, and filmmaker Jane Mote have collaborated on this project to celebrate the distinct vocabulary of the places we inhabit.

The stories continue outside, with local Storyteller Jamie Crawford leading guided walks around the un-explored edgelands of the town, or following the river bank to Piddinghoe. Or join the well-named urban tree expert Paul Wood for an entertaining and enlightening tour of Newhaven's urban forest, and discover a surprisingly diverse range of species from far-flung corners of the world.

Dirty Footprints Theatre Company are bringing free performances for kids to Newhaven Library, Salon 69 returns with six short talks followed by supper, and there’s a free afternoon of music from a local lineup including Kat Black, Mr. White & Daddy Longlegs, Nick Pynn and Dandelion Charm at the Denton Island Bandstand. Plus an alfresco revival of songs and shanties from the Tidemills Community Choir on the beach.

Add to that the 16 venues on the Haven Trail in this year’s Artwave Festival, a new contemporary art gallery on the Highstreet, and the new monthly Newhaven Flea Market at Hillcrest, and there’s a whole load of stuff to do in Newhaven this September.

Many events are free to attend or subsidised for residents of BN9, but you might need to book your spot. Check for the full lineup and ticket availability.

Newhaven Festival - September 3rd to September 25th
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