Culturally Chard is a three-year programme dedicated to celebrating the local character, culture, history and heritage of Chard, exploring what makes the evolving high street a special and unique place, relevant to current and future generations.
Culture, creativity and heritage play a key role in making the town centre a more attractive and vibrant place. Through a programme of new activities and events, Chard promotes and brings to life the town centre’s unique story, its past and present, creating a sense of pride and responsibility among Chard businesses, community groups and residents of all ages and backgrounds, drawing in visitors to celebrate the diversity of our town across the generations, ethnicities, genders and values.
This year Culturally Chard’s Spring Festival celebrates the past, present and future culture of this vibrant, diverse town and all are welcome to join, as the town celebrates the coming of Spring with a wide range of activities, taking place over three days at the end of April:
Thursday 27 April: The festival opens on Thursday 27 April at the Guildhall with a highly entertaining evening of live music, opened with performances from Holyrood Academy students. Jorden Lindsay will perform a set of acoustic numbers, before versatile four-piece from Weymouth, The Leggomen, take to the stage. This is a ticketed event and tickets can be bought online from Eventbrite or from the Guildhall.
Friday 28 April: During Friday 28 and Saturday 29, Chard Revealed, an exhibition organised by Chard Museum, will be held at the Guildhall. The exhibition will provide visitors with an opportunity to view and explore a collection of photographs from the Dave Wheadon Collection. During this time, the museum will also be hosting special exhibition “HeritArt”, which explores stories and interpretations of the town’s art, culture and heritage.
Chard Museum will be offering two different walks – the Blue Plaque Walk and the Lace Riot Walk. The Blue Plaque Walk guides walkers around 23 of the 27 plaques in and around Chard. A Guide will share the history of Chard through its buildings and people. The Lace Riot Walk takes a tour around seven sites significant to the Lace Industry and more specifically the Lace Riots of 1842.
A display of artwork from the Water Histories project including a short film made with students from Holyrood Academy, and artist Anna Chrystal Stephens will be showing her work at the Guildhall on Friday 28th, coordinated by Somerset Artworks.
Additionally on Friday, Ernie’s Journey is a free Family Circus Show; a magical theatre adventure including circus, physical theatre, stage magic, poetry and puppetry will be sure to entertain all ages. This is followed by a Circus workshop – also free of charge – for all ages and abilities – and will include short performances from local school groups.
Activities transition into an evening of sharing soup, music and creativity. Visitors are invited to meet new people in the community and enjoy a workshop and performance from Ukrainian theatre makers Bohdana Ushatenko and Nadiia Latsyba.
Saturday 29 April: On Saturday, Chard Town Council brings you a celebration of all things dance, bringing together a wide variety of different acts to appeal to a wide audience. Entry is free and this event will run from 11am-4pm.
The festival finale sees a comedy night, with a fantastic line-up of comedians to include MC Tom Glover and featuring, Jon Wagstaff, Chris Yates and headliner Sol Burnstein. This is a ticketed event and tickets can be bought online from Eventbrite or from the Guildhall.
For more details and a breakdown of the festival programme please see below and online by going to www.culturallychard.org.