Using the funding which is part of the UK government’s Levelling Up agenda, MBC has been able to bring a wide range of events seeing audiences enjoy everything from free concerts, parades, an arts carnival and the very first Literary Festival in the County Town.
In addition, MBC supported the annual Maidstone River Festival, the Thai Festival, Maidstone Fringe and has provided Creative Community Grants to 44 groups so far, using UKSPF. Some of which can be seen in a short video which shows the events and activities the funding has helped happen in the town: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JUr3aK-GLDM&t=7s
Cllr Claudine Russell, Cabinet Member for Communities, Leisure and Arts at MBC said:
This video is a snapshot of all the amazing things that have been happening in Maidstone this year. It is great to be see so many people coming here to enjoy some fantastic events which are all so different and have helped bring the town centre to life.
UKSPF aims to improve pride in place and increase life chances across the UK investing in communities and place, supporting local business, and people and skills. MBC has received £1,199,253 UK Shared Prosperity Fund to be used by March 2025 and has many more events and activities in the town planned for the next 12 months.
One of the most popular events in Maidstone funded by UKSPF was the very first literary festival which was held across a week in October. This saw large audiences of all ages coming along to enjoy the wide variety of authors and workshops using town centre venues including Maidstone Museum, Archbishops’ Palace and All Saints Church. The very popular event Maidstone LitFest is planned to return again in 2024.
The Council is incredibly proud of our County Town and has used the UK Shared Prosperity Fund to showcase what a great place it is and what it has to offer for our residents and visitors to Maidstone.