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Kentish Christmas market and live music to be held in Folkestone town centre


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A festive programme which includes a new artisan market and musical performances has been revealed.

The Christmas events will be held in Folkestone town centre and have been organised by Folkestone and Hythe District Council (FHDC).

The council's Kentish Christmas market will be in Sandgate Road, outside Folca
The council's Kentish Christmas market will be in Sandgate Road, outside Folca

The Kentish Christmas market will be located outside the Folca building - previously Debenhams - on Sandgate Road every Friday and Saturday from Friday, November 26 to Saturday, December 18.

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.

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 musicians will take place from 11.45am to 12.45pm and 1.30pm to 2.30pm every Friday and Saturday.

The programme is being managed by Chambers Folkestone and the Sea View Studio under the Folkestone Music Town initiative, and it is hoped it will encrouage more footfall in the high street.

Wooden huts are being created on Folkestone Harbour Arm for the Christmas market. Photo: Folkestone Harbour Arm
Wooden huts are being created on Folkestone Harbour Arm for the Christmas market. Photo: Folkestone Harbour Arm

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 - December 4, 11 and 18.

Cllr David Monk, leader of the 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 new sheltered eating area on Folkestone Harbour Arm. Photo: Folkestone Harbour Arm
The new sheltered eating area on Folkestone Harbour Arm. Photo: Folkestone Harbour Arm

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.

Information about musical performances will be posted here.

A festive market will also be held on the Folkestone Harbour Arm for the first time this Christmas.

Work on the arm has already started to create the wooden huts.

The harbour arm's festive market will run every Saturday and Sunday from November 27 until Christmas from 12pm to 8pm on Saturdays and 12pm to 6pm on Sundays.

It will also be open Thursday, December 23 on 12pm to 8pm and on Christmas Eve from 12pm to 6pm.

New sheltered seating area has also been created on the harbour arm, to allow guests to sit comfortably after ordering from vendors at The Goods Yard.

Read more: All the latest news from Folkestone

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