Beach party and brunch rounds of Bridport's sucessful Festival of Culture

Dorset Echo: LIGHTING UP TIME: Fire torch dancing at the Spirit of Bridport Festival of Culture Beach Party at West Bay LIGHTING UP TIME: Fire torch dancing at the Spirit of Bridport Festival of Culture Beach Party at West Bay

A BEACH party which lit up the night and a brunch the next morning brought the Spirit of Bridport’s inaugural Festival of Culture to a close.

Organisers say that the first festival won’t be the last and are hoping to stage another next year.

While the planned “wrap” party at the Electric Palace was cancelled due lack of support at the end of a bank holiday plagued by bad weather and the brunch-goers required brollies, the festival was hailed a success.

A break in the rain allowed the “party of the year” at West Bay on Sunday to go ahead with live music from dance band Orpheus, a series of films projected into the evening air and fire-torch dancing on the beach.

The party included the announcement of winners and prize-giving for the chefs' Pop-up Challenge and the Festival of Culture photography competition and a showing of Stephen Banks' latest time-lapse film Dorset by Night on an outdoor screen.

The party came at the end of the 17-day festival which aimed to put on show everything that people love about living in Bridport and the surrounding area.

Events have included music, workshops, drama, food and talks - including a session with photographer Robert Golden.

Co-chairmen Ros Kayes and Kit Glaisyer said: “We wanted there to be something for everyone – from cider and skittles, to lectures, photography workshops, cookery competitions and theatre, to live music at the Bay and of course the outstanding visual arts for which Bridport is so well known.

“As a community festival we have relied heavily on volunteers, who have given hours of their time to steward or to run events, as well as on the goodwill of Bridport businesses, organisations and traders who have contributed the food, materials, venues, reduced cost hire charges, and the many, many musicians whose free performances have helped us put together such a rich variety of events.

“We very much hope to produce the festival again next year.”

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