Belloc Broadwood and Beyond

So what is happening in May during the Year of Culture?

Can you believe we are already over a quarter of the way through the Horsham District Year of Culture? The Year of Culture team would love to know what you have been involved with so far. They would also like hear your feedback, so please let them know via their Facebook page, @HDCulture2019. So what’s happening in May?

The Nightingale Festival

It’s beautiful weather to be outside and the RSPB Pulborough Brooks is holding a Nightingale Festival in May. As part of the Festival author, Tessa Boase, will be exploring and celebrating the role women have played in conservation. Tessa’s new book, Mrs Pankhurst’s Purple Feather, looks at the extraordinary story of the RSPB’s birth. Her talk at Pulborough Brooks on Saturday 4th May will be followed by an opportunity to have your copy of the book signed.

The Nightingale Festival also involves the opportunity to enjoy the not quite dawn chorus, and a night-time safari to enjoy the nightingales’ concerts. As part of the Nightingale Festival, Dr Bethan Roberts will help you discover more about the literary life of the nightingale. She will be holding a workshop to look at existing examples of work in poetry and prose, and hear the bird, putting pen to paper with discussion and support.

Dr Bethan Roberts will also be talking about the cultural life of the bird – from the classical world to the present day, through Old English riddles, Romantic lyrics, and popular music – in relation to its natural history, to tell a story about our relationship with the natural world over the last two thousand years, and to celebrate the power of this little brown bird. Booking is essential for all these events, for further details please see

Innovation at Gatwick Airport

As part of the Year of Culture, the team has arranged a YOC talk by Abhi Chacko, Gatwick Airport’s Head of Enabling Technologies & Digital Innovation. Gatwick is one of the leading airports in the world when it comes to applying innovative technologies. The talk will give an overview of 4 innovations it delivered in the past 4 years, and about 12 innovations it is pursuing for the next 12 months. This fascinating talk takes place at The Capitol Theatre on Thursday 9th May.

Deadpan to Bedpan

Also at The Capitol is Jim Tavaré with From Deadpan to Bedpan. In 2017 comedian, BAFTA award winner, Harry Potter actor and double bassist Jim Tavaré was involved in a near fatal head-on automobile collision in Los Angeles, where he has resided since 2009. The show is a heart-warming and seriously funny tale of survival against the odds, strange forebodings, unbelievably massive American medical bills, and a dog called Mr Kippy! Join Jim on Friday 10th May for an entertaining evening.

A Taste of Ballroom

If you fancy trying something new, how about coming to A Taste of Ballroom? Dance Days are offering a number of free taster classes in 5 locations across the Horsham District. The classes are aimed at anyone from those with no dancing experience, and people who have two left feet are especially welcome! They also have two events for you to come and strut your stuff. The first is in July on the Forum in Horsham with a Big Band providing the music. The second takes place in October again with a Big Band providing the music. The first class takes place on Saturday 11th May with other classes on a number of dates following this.

The Great British Weekend

May see’s Horsham’s Great British Weekend take over the town centre. This is a two-day celebration of British cultural traditions, starting on Saturday 11th May with The Broadwood Day of Dance. This is a riot of colour, music, and dance featuring around 25 Morris dance sides mostly from the local area. There is also a small display of classic Morris Minor cars on The Forum. The dancers start with a procession at 10.30am and then disperse throughout the town to perform a variety of dance traditions including Cotswold Morris, Step Clogging, Border Morris, Appalachian Clogging, North West Morris and more…. listen out for the Drummers! At 3.00pm Musicians and dancers converge at the Bandstand for The Ceilidh  (Barn Dance). This is for everyone to join in!

Sunday 12th May is Horsham’s Great British Festival Day. This is a celebration of British traditions featuring a Concert in aid of Samaritans, organised by Horsham Folk Club and Horsham Samaritans. There will be medieval jollity with Loxwood Joust, Traction Engines by Horsham Traction Company and a classic British car display by SADCASE, together with an Aston Martin  display. There will be plenty of locally produced English food & ales, and much more to be announced!

The Sharpenhurst Quartet

The Sharpenhurst Quartet (with Heather Wrighton and Steve Dummer) concert marks the Horsham Music Circle’s 77th Anniversary. This presents a performance by our own professional musicians who offer so much to the music-making in the town and area. The programme is a chamber music feast with Debussy’s Danse Sacrée et Profane for harp and strings, the Clarinet Quintet by Mozart and Elgar’s String Quartet in E minor Op.83. The concert takes place at St Mary’s Parish Church on Saturday 11th May.

This is just a selection of the wonderful events happening in April. You can find full details of these events and more at, or pick up a #HDYOC19 programme from one of our many outlets across the Horsham District. Please check booking information and prices prior to attending an event as booking is essential for most events.

You can follow @hdculture2019 on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to stay up to date with the Year of Culture.

Posted in 2019, Events.

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