Skip to Homepage Skip to Content

The Gardening Gatherings

Leigh Library Gardens
Part of Southend Arts Festival

Leigh Folk Arts announces three-day ‘Garden Gatherings’ event for September

We’re excited to announce the first wave of artists and performers to play The Garden Gathering over the weekend of 3-5 September, set within the intimate Leigh Library Gardens.

The Garden Gatherings will mark the opening of the Southend Arts Festival, a two week series of live events held across Southend. Hosted by organisations and creatives from across the town, Southend Arts Festival will welcome back audiences to community events, supported by Southend Borough Council.

Three ‘garden gatherings’ will take place over the weekend. Ticketed events on Friday 3 and Saturday 4 will be followed by a free-to-all community music and arts festival on Sunday 5 September.

Saturday 4 September features a line-up exclusively curated by Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly that will culminate in the live debut of his new project, ‘The Confluence V1: Where two rivers meet’, alongside special guests.

A decade in the making, The Confluence is a long-promised collaboration between Dele Sosimi (Fela Kuti’s Egypt 80) and Sam Duckworth (Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly). The project was born out of a series of sessions at Southend’s SS2 Recording, with Callum Green (Drums), Philip Van Den Brandeler (Bass) via Stockholm; and Pete Fraser (Sax). Described as ‘the soundtrack to the road to a brighter, more free, tomorrow’. Tickets go on sale on Monday 28 June at 10am.

Support comes from Dele Sosimi Afrobeat Orchestra, Billericay songbird Mabes, powerfully imaginative and honest Sam Eagle; BBC Radio 1, 6music and Radio X supported Southend girl BLAB and the effortless vocals of Beckie Margaret. The show takes place in the 15th anniversary year since the release of Get Cape’s debut album.

The line-up was first announced on BBC Introducing in Essex, having teamed up with Leigh Folk Arts to select some of the county’s finest unsigned, undiscovered and under the radar musicians to join the bill across the weekend, including Oli FoxCristina Hart and Esme Emerson adding to the lineup of support on Saturday, and Benkio on Sunday, with more to be announced.

Sunday 5 September will see the entire park taken over with a full day of free entertainment music across two stages including in earnest, whose songwriting prowess is fuelled by encouraging open and honest conversations about mental health; Anglo-American James Riley, dubbed by Laura Marling as ‘Allman Brothers meets the Seeger Sessions’; former semi-finalist at BBC Radio 2 Young Folk awards Lucy Kitt; Brother-Sister due Catgod who’s music moves between folk-tinged, dreamy, rocky, swirling harmonies; plus ‘razor-sharp folk-rock’ (Mojo) duo Native Harrow from Pennsylvania.

The Garden Gatherings’ Sunday line-up goes on to include a special afternoon performance from John Smith who, having hailed from Essex/Devon, has spent the last 15 years touring internationally, amassing over 50 million streams on Spotify, sessioning for the likes of David Gray, Lianne La Havas and Tom Jones.

Sunday will be accompanied by community art workshops, children’s entertainment, street theatre, storytelling, food stalls, wellness activities, spoken word, dancing, street food, and a full bar, stocked with a specially selected range of craft and cask from Leigh-on-Sea Brewery, Garden Gatherings Beer Partner. Save the date – there is more to be announced!

More information about the opening night of side-splitting comedy on Friday 3 September will follow soon.

Tickets will be available at from Monday 28 June at 10am. No tickets are required for the free community event on Sunday 5 September.

Thanks to our partners Leigh-on-Sea Brewery, Southend Borough Council, Revive Digital, sixredsquares and BBC Introducing in Essex

Also part of Southend Arts Festival

Back to top