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We have designed a special 2021 light installation trail to bring together our community and offer everyone a free and festive event with the community at its heart. Getting back to socialising and feeling safe to get out and about again is going to take time, but we think it's really important to offer lots of opportunities for people to take things at their own pace and not have to worry about expensive tickets and entrance fees - especially when many have been struggling financially. Arts are a great leveller, and this event will act as something that all our community groups can use to come together, discuss and enjoy - schools, youth clubs, day centres for the elderly... it's time to thrive again! Our installations will be in situ for 4 days from 25-28 November to kick start the town's Christmas period, celebrating the town's built and natural heritage, but will also support local businesses, welcome visitors and provide a space for everyone to re-connect.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
1. The impact of Covid has left some residents anxious about returning to large events, others have felt isolated and detached and many businesses and families have struggled economically over the past 18 months. In order to meet these needs, we will replace the light procession by creating a light trail; this will offer an opportunity to recreate the much-loved atmosphere while allowing attendees space and time to engage with it in the a way they feel comfortable. 2. We want more people to come on board and get involved with the light trail and will open up the planning for community members in learning more about creative events to volunteer with the builds and on the event days. It's not just about us parachuting in light sculptures, it's about our community creating something we can all feel proud of together.
Steps to get it done:
Light Installation trails are increasingly popular, but due to the scale, cost of production and commercial focus, these events are often priced out of reach for many families and retired members of the community. This light trail aims to bring an element of the magic created at these events to Tenterden, not only making them free to access but so the installations can attract visitors over the Christmas in Tenterden weekend and avoid crowd bottle necks such as a procession. In 2019, 333 local school children worked together to create a town light installation. This programme will look to expand on this success by working in addition with local artists and crafters. The key theme for the 2021 festive event will be Tenterden's built and natural heritage; creating light installations that reflect the towns history and amazing wildlife. Installations will be offered to the council to remain in key areas and to the Kent & East Sussex Railway to support their festive activity.
About the space
The Light installations will be located at key locations on Tenterden High Street
Ashford Borough Council
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