Sidmouth Sea Fest returns to Sidmouth on 18th May with a Friday Night Fundraiser kicking off proceedings the evening before on the 17th. This year, marks the 10th anniversary of this home grown event.

The first Sidmouth Sea Fest took place in 2014, with the Sidmouth Coastal Community Hub’s directors running the event with just a few stalls and a handful of volunteers. Since then, Sea Fest has become a staple annual event that has grown organically into the collaboration it is today.

Raising awareness, embracing the challenges of climate change and celebrating our coastal community has always been at the core of Sea Fest. It was Sidmouth’s first single use plastics free festival and takes pride in recycling, reusing materials and using local suppliers to keep its carbon footprint low, the supply chain short and to support local businesses. Past themes have included: Rethinking Plastics, Celebrating Diversity Creatively, Kelp our Oceans.

The journey to plan, organise, fundraise, create and curate a truly inclusive festival and ensure it remains a free community event is never plain sailing. The pandemic, energy crisis and cost of living crisis have placed increasing pressures on outdoor community events. This year, the directors and crew are facing the challenge of the Ham, one of the main event venues, being out of action from this September to next July due to sewage improvement projects.

Director, Louise Cole, said: “We are working with South West Water and welcome why we have been asked for find a new location for 2025, moving site is too onerous in one year with the challenges a new venue would present, so Sea Fest as we know it will take a break in 2025, however there will be a new community project to focus on – more news on that soon! We are planning a Sea Fest Fundraiser event to bring the joy, we will then be back for the full event in May 2026.”

Coco Hodgkinson, artistic director for Sea Fest, said: “In view of the disruption next year, we hope everyone will join us on Saturday 18th from 10am to celebrate the incredible hard work of the community and children at our schools, who all contribute.

“With a packed programme all day, community stalls will close at 5pm and the ever popular Garaghty and Thom will be such a treat to entertain at 5.30pm to take us into the evening’s DJs and bands with reggae-dance-funk band, Malavita, taking us to a 10.30pm finish. We have so much local talent, Sea Fest is proud to produce this event and help make Sidmouth’s cultural offer vibrant.”

Tickets for the Friday Night Fundraiser are available now from here.

The main event kicks off on 18th May at 10 am, with a full programme of entertainment, food and drink and a chance to seas the day!

Sidmouth Sea Fest poster

Sidmouth Coastal Community Hub are very grateful to have the support of Sidmouth Town Council, Visit Sidmouth, South West Water, Potburys, Fords, Molyneux Financial, Sidmouth Hotels and Burt’s Snacks.