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100s turn out for 10th annual Patchfest
7:10am Monday 14th July 2014 in News
THOUSANDS of people soaked up the sun, fun, music and sewing at the tenth annual edition of Patchfest.
The biggest ever running of the free volunteer-run festival was hailed as a huge success by organisers, performers and spectators.
Patchfest was held at William Clarke Park, off Hartington Road, on Saturday and included two live music stages, DJs, a beer and a tea tent with food stalls, circus skills and a market place.
The event, organised by Friends of William Clarke Park and part-funded by national community organisation Our Big Gig, is on the site of the old Kemp Town branch railway line.
The event saw 22 acts play live while youngsters strutted their stuff on the youth stage organised by long-time volunteer Boo Hodges.
Alex James Ellison, 22 from Bonchurch Road in Brighton, was performing songs from his new release Duvet Days, which is available at iTunes.
The Brighton musician said: “Patchfest was great.
“I live just off the Patch and I have been to all the Patchfests and it is crazy how it has grown over the years from just a few stalls.
“It was so packed out, there were so many people there you couldn’t move.
“I have done lots of gigs all over Brighton and London but this was the first festival performance I have done.”
Organiser Duncan Blinkhorn said 100 volunteers led by a 20-strong committee took two days to set up and another two days to clear away.
He added: “We started Patchfest because this used to be a very quiet, almost unknown park, which people living two streets away didn’t know about.
“Now, because of Patchfest, if you don’t know The Patch, it just means you have not been paying attention.
”We have toddlers, parents, young people and old people, it’s a very mixed crowd.
“It’s the high point of the year for people living round Lewes Road, Elm Grove and Hartington Road and beyond, there are people who have moved away from the area but always come back for Patchfest.”