Folkestone & Hythe District Council has announced its Festive Programme for 2021, which includes a new artisan market and music performances in the heart of Folkestone town centre.
The Kentish Christmas market will be located outside the Folca building on Sandgate Road every Friday and Saturday from Friday 26 November to Saturday 18 December. The market will feature a range of products from local producers and makers as well as street food options and will be in place from 10am until 3pm. Vendors will be announced weekly on social media (see notes to editors).
To coincide with the market and to celebrate Folkestone’s status as the world’s first Music Town, visitors to the town centre will be able to enjoy a programme of live music on market days. Performances from local musicians will take place from 11.45am – 12.45pm and 1.30pm – 2.30pm every Friday and Saturday. The programme is being managed by local businesses The Chambers Folkestone and the Sea View Studio under the Folkestone Music Town initiative and more information will be available at: www.folkestonemusic.co.uk.
Parking in the council’s car parks and its on-street pay and display parking bays will be free on the three Saturdays leading up to Christmas (4, 11 and 18 December 2021).
Cllr David Monk, Leader of Folkestone & Hythe District Council, said, “Folkestone is the place to experience the festive season, with activities taking place right across the town, from the town centre’s markets, through our Creative Quarter and to the Harbour Arm and beyond.
“We’re excited to be able to bring this new market to the town centre and showcase local musical talent. We want to promote the value of shopping local this Christmas, bring footfall into businesses throughout the town and create the celebratory and festive atmosphere we all deserve.”
Dr Julia Jones, founder of Folkestone Music Town, said, “These events will encourage the vast swathe of superb local musicians to pop up and showcase their talents in the town centre, so that people can be proud of living in and visiting the world’s first Music Town this Christmas.”
The Kentish Christmas market will have around 10 – 15 stalls each week and will be operated on behalf of the council by the organisers of the popular local Vegan Vibes market. The programme is in addition to Folkestone’s general market which will continue to trade on Thursdays and Saturdays as usual.
The Festive Programme is being delivered as part of the Welcome Back campaign, a fund that is providing councils across England with a share of £56m from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) which supports the safe return to high streets and helps to build back better from the pandemic.