Library imageDrag Queen

Dover at Night is a free drop-in event trail encouraging visitors young and old to explore historic and creative spaces in Dover town centre on Friday 22 March from 5pm to 9pm. There’s an action-packed programme of art and craft activities, storytelling, conservation-in-action, digital projections, music, dance and drama.

From Dover Museum and historic St Mary’s Church to the Riverside Centre, Future Foundry’s creative space and Dover SmART Project’s distinctive pink van, this illuminated night promises to be a lot of fun. Entrances to venues will be lit up in celebration, while inspiring Dover values artwork created by more than 1,000 local schoolchildren from the Samphire Academy Trust, will be projected onto the inside and outside of buildings.

Celebrating the vibrance of Dover at Night

Highlights include an opportunity to meet the historic Maison Dieu’s stained-glass conservators from Easthope Stained Glass as well as the wall paintings specialists from Arte Conservation, who will be talking about their painstaking work to reinstate the impressive decorative scheme of Neo-gothic architect and designer William Burges in the building’s Connaught Hall and Mayor’s Parlour.

This family-friendly event includes a wealth of creative activities for children – from dragon storytelling and shadow puppet making, to glow-in-the-dark graffiti, candle carving and spooky torchlit tours of Dover Museum.

Participants can:

  • hear the story of St Martin, Dover’s patron saint, and of the Good Samaritan window at St Mary’s Church which will be lit up for the evening
  • explore Dover’s colourful literary history with Canterbury Christ Church University’s Kent-Maps-Online and the story of the Bishop of Dover’s George and Dragon crozier with the team from Canterbury Cathedral
  • meet a hooden chough, a noisy, flapping, human-sized incarnation of the rare birds that have been successfully re-introduced to Dover Castle, and Dover’s hooden horse ‘Albinus Invictus’ for a spot of mischievous mayhem
  • enjoy Raku-pottery firing by Ceramic Art Dover, experimental sound art by Cherif Hashizume and Pleistocene Megafauna, and dancing by The Fuddlers in the Market Square
  • see Dover’s spectacular Winter Light-up animals in close-up detail and a drag queen costume display by Dover Pride
  • watch a special performance in Dover Museum’s community cinema by Dover Youth Theatre: Fire, Frights, Cooks and Crooks is inspired by night-time tales from the Maison Dieu, including a devastating 1745 conflagration, WW2 firewatchers and the controversial arrival of rock n’ roll at the Town Hall Dance
  • visit medieval St Edmund’s Chapel, which is hosting a multi-sensory installation by textile artist Jenni Cresswell, inspired by the history of the Ladywell Spring.

Martin Crowther, Engagement Officer at the Maison Dieu, said:

“As part of the Reawakening of the Maison Dieu, we have worked with Dover’s community groups, who shared their vision of putting on more Dover-wide events to celebrate the town’s rich history and heritage and encourage local participation. We are now delighted to launch Dover’s first night trail for our residents and visitors.”

Louise Webb, Creative Producer for Artswork, said:

“Our Placemaking programme is all about celebrating local communities and my job is to support Dover residents to celebrate the unique landscape and delve into Dover’s interesting past, present and future, helping to create positive change. Dover at Night encompasses all of this and we’re thrilled to be bringing this to the town and its residents.”

For full event information, visit www.maisondieudover.org.uk/events

  • Refreshments will be available at St Mary’s Church, the Riverside Centre and The Art Café.
  • Participants may visit venues in any order, with no advance booking necessary (except for the Dover Youth Theatre performance).
  • All venues are buggy and wheelchair accessible (except historic St Edmund’s Chapel).
  • From Saturday 16 March, trail sheets will be available at the Dover Museum shop, The Big Local (Charlton Centre), Riverside Centre, St Mary’s Church and The Art Club. Trail sheets stamped at three venues will receive a small prize from the Dover Museum shop (until 8.45pm).

Dover at Night is led by the Maison Dieu and Artswork in partnership with over 20 community partners and has been made possible with generous funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Artswork and Arts Council England.

By Ed

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