East Preston Village Festival

Festival 2018 Report (22 June 2018)

The 2018 East Preston Festival was once again blessed with fine weather and it seemed as though the whole village turned out for our annual celebration of village life.

Packed events included a children’s extravaganza afternoon, the Party on the Green with its traditional tug of war, a craft fair, community market, talk on local historic houses and Paul Campbell once again hosted an Antiques Valuation morning. Sports enthusiasts could choose between free coaching at Angmering-on-Sea Tennis Club, an open evening at the bowls club, a golf tournament, a Festival Bridge Drive or challenging local chess champions. Many residents and visitors enjoyed the Open Gardens and Art Trail and a Scarecrow tour. New to Festival were a Food and Drink Fair; a Memories of East Preston morning, where long term residents and local historians shared their memories with more recent incomers; Le Café Francais created a continental patisserie in East Preston and an Art Exhibition showcased our talented local artists. There were owls on the village green, musical afternoons, garden parties, tea parties and lots of cake.

Evening entertainment included something for everyone; an Opera Night with 3-course Italian dinner; dance night with party band Vertigo; the popular Phoenix Big Band concert and Top Tribute Greg Dorrell as Rod Stewart, when the village rocked to Rod’s classic hits. There was also a Festival Quiz, Shuffleboard evening, a very successful Race Night, Bingo with the Legion ladies and a Fashion Show.

Ten days of events culminated in the Festival Procession on Saturday and a Novelty Dog Show on Sunday. The theme for the Parade was ‘Celebrating the Countries of the World Cup’ and the floats and walking groups paraded through the streets with crowds of villagers cheering them on. The Procession ended at Lashmar Recreation Ground where Bill Cole’s Funfair and the Festival Boot Sale were being held. On a gloriously sunny Sunday afternoon, people flocked to the village green to try and win a rosette for their pet and the winners of the Festival Prize Draw were announced.

The Committee are grateful to local businesses who donated prizes, sponsored events and sold tickets; to the pubs, clubs, organisations and community groups who staged their own events under the umbrella of the Festival; to East Preston Parish Council for its financial help and to our experienced team of volunteer Festival Makers: we couldn’t do it without you. Most of all, our thanks to the people of East Preston who never fail us with their enthusiastic support of events, make brilliant scarecrows, produce wonderfully imaginative procession entries and open their lovely gardens to the public.

Finally, we would also like to thank our mysterious ‘yarn bombers’ who for the last three years, just before the festival starts, have dressed the village road furniture in their knitted creations. It makes everyone smile and puts us in the mood for having fun. The trees looked fabulous this year!

See us on Facebook, and there are also photos on Flickr.

Festival Photos

The Festival Committee now have their own Flickr Photos account. You can reach it by visiting the address https://www.flickr.com/photos/eastprestonfestival/albums. A few photos are in place at the moment, and more will probably be added in the coming weeks. So, keep taking a look, or bookmark the page.

The Carnival Procession

If you missed the carnival on Saturday, here’s a 16 minute video of the procession.

Photo Competition

These are the winning entries from the photo competition, with the theme of Sussex Scenes.

Photo2018 first
1st prize and cup – Sylvia Kislingbury (photo of Long Furlong)

Photo2018 second
2nd prize – Harvey Woods (photo of West Pier Brighton)

Photo2018 third
3rd prize – Mary Bacon (photo of Bosham)

What goes on behind the scenes …

Take a look at the Festival Facebook page to see one of the many things going on behind the scenes to prepare for East Preston Festival week.

2018 Festival (1 June to 10 June)


The 2018 Festival Programme is now available from local shops and businesses. Don’t forget to pick up your copy. Alternately click here to view the online version.


Preparations for the 2018 East Preston Village Festival are well under way and the Festival Committee is already planning a full programme.

The theme for this year’s Festival Parade and Scarecrow Competition is ‘Celebrating the Countries of the World Cup’. The Committee felt we had to acknowledge the most important championship in our national game, however, this theme is not just about football but also celebrates the countries that have qualified, so think customs, costumes and culture.


Many favourite Festival events will be returning including a Shuffleboard evening, the Phoenix Big Band Night and a Fashion Show. Following on from its successful introduction in 2017, Ristorante al Mare will once again be organising an Opera Night with dinner.

In addition to the well-established programme, new to Festival this year are the pop/rock group Vertigo, one of the top party bands in the South East, and the 2018 top tribute will be Greg Dorrell as Rod Stewart. Featured on TV’s ‘One and Only’ show, Greg is one of the finest Rod tributes in Europe. Another first for 2018 is a Race Night, so come along and enjoy an exciting evening of horse racing and risk a flutter.


In recognition of Sussex Day, held by West Sussex County Council on 16th June each year to celebrate the rich heritage and culture of Sussex, the theme for this year’s photo competition will be ‘Sussex Scenes’. Photos can be emailed to epfestivalphotos@gmail.com


Fabulous events and activities for all the family are being planned for this year. The Children’s Extravaganza Afternoon will be back on the first Saturday and includes Circus Scene, Robbie the Magician, Punch & Judy, Face Painting and a Lucky Dip. Who Racing’s micro-Scalextrics slot car racing and an exhibition of model railways by Bognor Railway Club will once again be part of the Procession Day entertainment.

Coles Funfair is returning to Lashmar Recreation Ground and will be open on Thursday 7th, Friday 8th and Saturday 9th June, and the Fun Dog Show on the Village Green on Sunday 10th June is always a great family day out.
(Please note that children must be accompanied by an adult at all Festival events.)


One of our most popular events is the Open Gardens and Art Trail and new gardens are always welcome. Many people who open their gardens use the opportunity to raise funds for their favourite charity and some also display the work of our talented local artists. The Open Gardens and Art Trail will take place on Saturday 2nd June and Monday 4th June from 2pm to 5pm. If you would like to take part, whether gardener or artist, please email eastprestonfestival@hotmail.co.uk.


We are hoping to stage a morning of reminiscences about our village on Saturday 2nd June. Did you grow up in or near East Preston? Do you have happy memories of past Festivals? Do you remember the East Preston of yesterday? If so, we would love to see any photos and hear your anecdotes. If you can help, please contact Festival Chairman Jackie Pilcher on 01903 782783 or email eastprestonfestival@hotmail.co.uk


Due to the closure of Hedgers Newsagents, the Festival Box Offices will be Seaview Stores and Just Because (formally Treats and Treasures). Both are in Sea Road.


More information about previous years' festivals