Businesses across Bexhill have signalled their support for this year’s Festival of the Sea by signing up as sponsors – much to the delight of organisers.
The popular new annual event – which was previously called the Sea Angling Festival – starts on September 6 and continues until the end of the month, with a host of angling competitions and taster sessions running throughout the 25 days.
However, the main attraction for non-fisherman is the appropriately named Big Event, which takes place on September 6 and 7 on Bexhill seafront.
The lawns event will include cooking demonstrations by Billingsgate Seafood Training School, stalls highlighting excellent local Sussex produce and businesses, global seafood cuisine, angling coaching and demonstrations by renowned angling professionals, a fun fair, Morris dancing and outdoor film and music at the De La Warr Pavilion.
All that though costs money and organisers have been keen to get as many local businesses on board to support the event, which acts as a big attraction for the town in the quieter months.
And earlier this week the team behind the festival revealed a number of firms and organisations have already signed up to sponsor the fun.
Marks & Spencer, Discover Bexhill, Bexhill Chamber of Commerce, Rother District Council, the Angling Trust, and Argh Industries Ltd are all sponsoring the festival this year.
Councillor Simon Elford, chairman of the festival committee, was delighted to receive their backing. He said: “Sponsorship has proved harder than ever to come by this year, but due to the hard work of the committee and some generous sponsors all is looking bright for the future of the festival. We must also thank all the sponsors who are providing technical help, advertising and ideas to make this the biggest and best festival to date.”
Water sports and environmental sustainability are the key themes of this year’s festival, but punters will also be looking forward to the live music and film.
The Fishwives Choir will open the entertainment on the De La Warr Pavilion terrace at noon on Saturday September 6. The choir of 40 raises funds for The Fishermen’s Mission and is sure to be popular with the crowds.
A full programme of live music will continue on the terrace through the afternoon and there will be fun and games on the lawns all day Saturday and Sunday as well as a screening of the classic film The Fog.
Hillary Randall, chairman of Bexhill Town Team and member of the festival committee, said: “The festival is important to businesses in Bexhill and Rother, it introduces new visitors to our town and promotes Sussex, Sussex produce and producers; the visitor’s spend is a welcome boost to the local economy. Anyone interested in sponsoring the festival should email firstname.lastname@example.org.”