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District Dispatch - 8 May 2024

I hope you're all having a great spring so far. As we head into the summer months and the days are longer and hopefully brighter, many of us will be out and about. With this in mind, I wanted to remind you about the exciting events programme that we have in store!

Councillor Jess Brown-Fuller, Cabinet Member for Culture and Events

Events are really important because they bring us together as a community and they help generate additional income for local businesses — not to mention, encourage people to come and visit!

Back in 2019, we asked for your thoughts on the types of events you would like to see. In response to your feedback, we've delivered more varied markets and a diverse range of events that are now popular fixtures in people's diaries. This includes the Distinguished Gentleman's Ride, which makes its return to Chichester city centre on Sunday 19 May.

The city centre welcomes its first ever Chichester Pride parade on Saturday 25 May, which is part of the main Pride Festival taking place at Chichester College on the same day.

At the end of May, take a visit to the stunning RSPB Medmerry Nature Reserve, where you'll be able to view three new art pieces, designed by local artists to celebrate the beauty of this incredible site. As part of our Culture Spark programme, which is funded by the government's UK Shared Prosperity Fund, we invited local artists to put forward ideas for three unique commissions that explore the relationship between the reserve and the community. These special art pieces will be unveiled at the reserve on Friday 31 May.

Also delivered as part of the Culture Spark programme, there will be a free 'paint-off' workshop at Bishop's Palace Gardens in Chichester on Saturday 8 June, tying in with the Cathedral's Festival of Flowers. We're also planning similar events at Petworth House and Woolbeding Gardens — more details to come soon!

On Sunday 7 July, don't miss the return of our Chichester Summer Street Party and Cross Market and More in the city centre. You'll find street food and live entertainment, plus our innovative, quality mixed street market, showcasing creative talent from across the district.

Last year's outdoor cinema event in Midhurst was a huge success and I'm pleased to say that we're busy organising another free all-day event for Saturday 13 July. There will be two films showing with accompanying entertainment in Market Square — the afternoon will have a young family focus, with more details to come soon, and in the evening there will be a screening of Mamma Mia with an Abba Tribute band. Midhurst will also host to a brand new event this year featuring stand-up comedians and street musicians! This free event will take place on Saturday 27 July — definitely not one to be missed. 

At the start of the year, we brought the first vegan market to Chichester. We received fantastic feedback and so I'm delighted to say that the market will be back on Sunday 22 September, bringing together vegan street food vendors, artisan bakers, craft brewers, ethical jewellery, cosmetics, clothing and more!

To keep up-to-date on the many events and activities taking place across the district, please follow our social media pages — in particular, our designated Chichester District events and markets page (opens new window); look out for your latest initiatives magazine; visit our Chichester District Council 'What's On' page; and consider signing up to our Chichester District Council email newsletter.

Don't forget that in between all of these great events, we have our regular Chichester Farmers' Markets, which take place every first and third Friday of the month between 9am and 2pm. Not only will you find the freshest and tastiest produce but farmers markets are a more sustainable way of buying your weekly groceries too, so please do support local!

Best Wishes

Cllr Jess Brown-Fuller

Cabinet Member for Culture and Events at Chichester District Council