Thetford: Town set for festival

Photo: Simon Parker

A KALEIDOSCOPE of colour, sound, sport and heritage will bring Thetford to life this week as its third annual festival gets under way.

A variety of shows, attractions and activities will be on offer, and hundreds of people are expected to turn out to enjoy the community camaraderie at the Thetford Festival.

Organised by the Thetford Tourism and Heritage Partnership, it aims to bring together activities organised by the town’s groups and charities under one umbrella, in a bid to raise awareness of heritage and promote tourism.

One of the organisers, Karen-Emma White, said this year’s festival had incorporated feedback from previous years and was bigger than ever.


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“The festival shows off some of our unique heritage,” she said.

“We are a small market town but we’ve got big links internationally with the Sikh community and very talented people, with the Thetford Players performing and the academy putting their pupils’ work on display, for example.”

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The two-week programme will begin at 6.30pm on Friday with an open-air performance by the Thetford Players of three short plays in Kings House Gardens, continuing with two more performances on consecutive days.

There is also an art exhibition by Thetford Academy pupils at the Charles Burrell Museum on Minstergate, which will run until September 1, and a visit to the Dad’s Army Museum on Cage Lane by the original Jones’s van, as seen on the TV programme.

The town’s very own “world cup” will kick off on August 27 with a five-a-side tournament and charity fun day on Redcastle playing fields, followed by a market the next evening and, on August 29, a chance to find out more about the history of shops and shopping at the Ancient House Museum.

The festival highlight for many will be A Big Day Out in Thetford on September 8, to be opened by South West Norfolk MP Elizabeth Truss and Sikh historian Peter Bance, which will include a dance workshop where people can learn Bhangra and Bollywood moves, traditional Sikh sword dancing, and household objects from Elveden Hall.

The programme will conclude with Thetford Festival Songs of Praise.

To view the full programme, visit www.thetfordfestival.org.uk or call 01842 751975

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