Thatcham Town Council

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Thatcham Town Council, Brownsfield Road, Thatcham, RG18 3HF

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Home > Council News > Thatcham Festival 2020 Review

Thatcham Festival 2020 Review

October 10th-18th

Thatcham Town Council was delighted to present a programme of events for Thatcham Festival 2020. Despite a challenging backdrop of Covid-19 resulting with many cancelled events, the Town Council adapted by embracing new technology and the Festival went ahead with a reduced element of live events and a focus on online talks, demonstrations and films that could be safely delivered to residents in their own home.

One of the live events that people could attend, was the annual Leisure and Craft Fair at St Mary’s Church and Thatcham Broadway (pictured above). Stalls were socially distanced, and numbers were restricted in the church, but despite this both areas were well attended and everybody was very sensible. Women’s Institute member Christine Sloan echoed many of the stallholders with positive feedback from the day ‘’My expectations of footfall and sales was quite low, but I was pleasantly surprised. I think it is probably the highest amount we have taken in all our years at the Festival.  It was so good for members to actually come to the stall and see each other and the public again‘’ Fun on the Field at Thatcham Memorial Hall & Playing Fields held on Saturday 17th October, was also blessed with good weather and good  audiences able to see a vast array of classic cars, a dog show as well as a number of community and artisan stall holders.

This year featured a number of new walks, held in groups of six and organisers adapted by combining led walks with partially self-guided walks. Charlotte Allchin at Thatcham Nature Discovery Centre, cleverly set up a stunning willow exhibition and storytale about ‘The Willow Tree’ for walkers to enjoy whilst en route.

Zoom, Facebook live stream and YouTube premiers were all utilised for events such as cooking demonstrations, live music, climate change and history talks, writing workshops and a singalong for pre-schoolers. You can find all of the films on our YouTube channel and so do take a look if you missed any of the events.

An international audience of over 50 people were able to see a talk by Jo Berry on ‘Is it about Forgiving’ presented by West Berkshire Peace and Integration Forum. The first Thatcham Festival Dance showcase and workshops featured 9 local Dance Schools with the preview film featuring organiser Sonia Brown reaching over 9,000 people and over 600 engagements.


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