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Maidstone: Vicar's Picnic festival tickets on sale for July 2018 on The Lees in Yalding

By Angela Cole

It may be winter, but think picnics and sunshine – tickets have gone on sale for next summer’s Vicar’s Picnic.

The annual family friendly music festival, which is held in Yalding, will be held on Friday, July 20 and Saturday, July 21 next year.

Held on the banks of the River Medway, the independent festival will moved to the third weekend in July at the request of Yalding Parish Council, which manages the festival site on The Lees.

The Vicar's Picnic on the banks of the River Medway, Yalding
The Vicar's Picnic on the banks of the River Medway, Yalding

Headliners in 2017 were The Fratellis and Bruce Foxton’s From the Jam, with previous years seeing Reef and Cast perform.

Organisers have set aside their biggest budget yet for the 2018 bands.

Festival founder and creative director Dave King said: “We have become a victim of our own success. As the size of the event has increased, so have the costs and it was only thanks to a major sponsor that prices were able to stay low last year.

Bruce Foxton From the Jam performed at last year's Vicar Picnic
Bruce Foxton From the Jam performed at last year's Vicar Picnic

“Our supporters have come to expect a great line-up of bands and that’s what we intend to provide. There will be no increase in the size of the festival, so that we retain the ‘vibe’ and the boutique feel – but we will be aiming to get even bigger and better bands.

“Kent’s biggest, little festival will again host International, emerging and local artist alongside comedy, art and the coolest kids’ entertainment we can find, with profit going to brilliant charities.”

The Vicar's Picnic last year
The Vicar's Picnic last year

The festival began in 2012 as a ‘bit of fun’ for friends, in a field off Vicarage Lane – and has grown to attract almost 4,000 people.

Last year’s event also supported the Maidstone children’s charity, Dandelion Time, raising more than £5,000.

Early bird tickets are now on sale and camping facilities are available. For tickets visit vicarspicnic.co.uk or pop in to Yalding Post Office, Yalding Tea Rooms or The Chequers, Laddingford.

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