The Horsham Year of Culture 2019 starts on Saturday (January 5) with an official opening in Horsham Park to which everyone is invited.
Here we provide readers with a guide to what you can expect during the year, where to find out more details and how to get involved.
The official opening
A laser light show is to launch the Horsham District Year of Culture on Saturday January 5.
The family friendly event will be staged in Horsham Park’s sensory garden to mark the start of the year-long celebrations.
The free to attend launch will take place from 3-5pm and everyone is invited to attend.
As well as magical performers and entertainers, organisers of the Year of Culture will be at the park’s Conservatory Café to explain what’s planned for the year.
A spectacular laser light show will begin at 4.45pm lighting up Park House and marking the official start of the 2019 Year of Culture. The show is created by LM Productions and RMV Productions.
What is it all about?
The Horsham District will showcase world class musicians, multi-million selling authors and high profile actors alongside local brewers holding barnstorming music nights, ukulele jams, classical concerts, innovative sculptural installations and so much more.
‘Firsts’ for the coming year
The first ever large scale outdoor performance of Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream will take place at Knepp Castle; the first ever Horsham Film Festival will be held; the first ever Sussex Comedian of the Year competition is planned and the first ever project to include projections and lights in a variety of locations is also in the schedule.
What was the reason to hold such an event?
According to Horsham District Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture Jonathan Chowen: “At the outset, we set our stall out to get as many local people as possible involved to find new talents in their own communities, and to also invite in visitors from far and wide to discover just what we have to offer from some may see as an unknown area of Sussex that lies between Brighton and London.
“This is a chance to really put us on the cultural and heritage map and gain us the recognition we deserve.
“What I think is particularly inspiring is that the vast array of events are not just for people to go and watch, but people can also take part themselves too – for many, they will be trying things out for the first time and finding they may have hidden skills. Lots of the activities are completely free to attend for all to enjoy.”
What events are planned?
There is a long list of events already planned and they can be found at the Horsham District Year of Culture 2019 website.
How to keep in touch
You can also follow the Year of Culture on Twitter @HDculture2019, Instagram @HDculture2019 and on Facebook, where you can find up to minute events listings and booking details, regular updates and live commentaries on everything that’s going on and the reactions to it.
There is also a hard copy programme. The first covers January to June and the second programme will cover July to December.
Programmes are available at Horsham Museum and Art Gallery, The Capitol, leisure and sports centres in the District, Steyning Bookshop, all libraries throughout the District and many other outlets, as well as in a downloadable version on the website.
How to get involved?
If you’re planning on putting on an event as part of the Horsham District Year of Culture 2019 then you can go to the guide on the Year of Culture’s website for useful information.