Thatcham has a unique heritage, amazing countryside, and a strong community arts scene, and the Town Council is looking to showcase this richness in this year’s Festival, with an extensive and diverse range of activities at locations throughout the town. Mayor of Thatcham, Councillor Mark Lillycrop, said he is looking forward to a big turnout at this year’s festival.
“No matter what your age and interest, the diverse range of musical events on offer is exceptional,” said the Mayor, “from outdoor stages and contemporary sounds at The Big Thatcham Fest-Off, with funk band Groove X and our celebrated young rock band Beyond the Sons, to indoor concerts with choral, classical and brass band music. We’re looking forward to concerts from Cold Ash Brass Band, Incantata, No Strings Attached and Harmony Choir, as well as an evening of Irish Music by Mark T and special guests.”
For those wanting to get involved in music there will be a beginners’ ukulele workshop for all ages, free Singing for Confidence sessions for 11 to 24 year olds with Vox Fresh’s Kat Penn, and a Mini Maestros music session for the under-fives with Berkshire Music Trust. All workshops take place on Saturday 7 October in the morning at St Mary’s Church as part of the Thatcham Introducing Platforms.
“There are guided nature and history walks throughout the centre and surrounding countryside,” continued the Mayor, “as well as an author talk with international bestselling crime writer J.S. Monroe, who kicks off the Festival on Friday 6 October. James Bond creator Ian Fleming will be the subject of presenter Sheryl Green, who pinpoints Fleming’s time in naval intelligence during the war as being the inspiration for our favourite secret agent.”
Families will also be well catered for, with events such as the free Apple Day at the Nature Discovery Centre on Sunday 15 October. On the same day and location there’s a fascinating workshop all about the role of willow in weaving, walking and storytelling; don’t forget to book your place! Thatcham Library also has lots of fun on offer with their free jigsaws and board games events on Monday 9, Friday 13 and Saturday 14 October. Look out too for the Paranormal Pumpkin Patch, a mobile phone friendly trail that takes you around Thatcham’s High Street and Broadway.
There is indeed something for everyone at this year’s Festival. The first day of the Festival features an open day at Thatcham Catholic Hall with Thatcham’s U3A (University of the Third Age) showcasing the many activities open to those no longer in full time work, from book clubs to wine tasting, art and crafts, dancing and playing games such as Mah Jong.
If computer games are more your thing, then Hackspace will take you back in time as they reprise last year’s incredibly successful Retro Computer Games Exhibition with games from the 1980s through to the early 2000s.
For full details visit thatchamtowncouncil.gov.uk/events/a-festival
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