An exciting creative arts festival is coming to Gosport this month The Fort Brockhurst Festival, celebrating local heritage and culture and involving more than 1,000 schoolchildren from the town.

The Fort Brockhurst Festival  (19 to 21 July) combines free and low-cost music, dance and art events for everyone  in the dramatic setting of Fort Brockhurst on the outskirts of Gosport town.

Whether you’re a seasoned concertgoer or a curious newcomer, the Fort Brockhurst Festival offers something for everyone. Highlights are set to include free youth orchestra performances with BYO picnic, free gigs by local bands, and a come-and-join-in community ceilidh dance which costs just £1 a ticket.

The festival is the latest celebration for the Gosport Cultural Education Project, a joint initiative between The Grange Festival and Hampshire Music Service, and follows successful pilot events in the borough in summer 2023.

Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Education, Councillor Steve Forster, said: “I’ve followed the development of this inspiring project since its inception and it’s a tribute to the dedication of those involved that it’s back – bigger and better for 2024. I know that the many pupils involved through local schools have been energised by the whole experience, which has enriched their sense of place and community. And of course, the historic setting of Fort Brockhurst will give the performances a dramatic edge unique to this location.”

Susan Hamilton, Director of Learning at The Grange. said: “As the Fort Brockhurst Festival fast approaches and we reach the highlight of our yearlong project, it is a chance to celebrate the amazing partnerships we have formed. With inputs from not only the lead organisations Hampshire Music Service and Learning at The Grange, but also from Hampshire Cultural Trust, Filskit Theatre, Folk Active, Quay West Studios and especially English Heritage. Without their support and input and the many individuals along the way, this project would not have been the success that it is.

“We expect to welcome over 2,500 people from across the community and participating schools over the week at Fort Brockhurst. This is a testament not only to the participants and the enthusiasm they have shown the project but also the need and impact that the project has and hopes to continually strive to deliver over the next few years.”

Highlights of the Festival 

Gosport Cultural Education Project Exhibition at Fort Brockhurst Keep (Thursday 18 July to Sunday 21 July) 

Visitors will be able to walk around and admire the creations of young people and the project’s partners from workshops over the past two years, revealing through art how Gosport is perceived by its younger inhabitants.

Time: Fort Brockhurst opening hours
Tickets: FREE

Wonder Gigs (Friday, 19 July) 

Early years music sessions for babies and toddlers, presented by FILSKIT THEATRE.

Time: 10 AM
Tickets: £2

Youth Proms (Friday, 19 July) 

Enjoy an evening of music with the Gosport and Fareham Youth Orchestra. Bring your own picnic, blanket, or foldable chair.

Time: 5 PM – 9:30 PM
Admission: FREE

Music at the Fort (Saturday, 20 July) 

Local bands and musicians take the main stage, courtesy of Quay West Studios. Food and drink available for purchase.

Time: 1 PM – 10 PM
Admission: FREE

Community Ceilidh (Sunday, 21 July) 

Pronounced “KAY-LEE!” A lively get-together for all ages, led by Folk Active. Learn the steps, dance, and enjoy quality family time. Live band, with refreshments available to purchase.

Time: 1 PM & 2:30 PM
Tickets: £1

For more information and to book tickets, visit GCEP.HANTSMUSIC.ORG.UK.