Newmarket; A Right Royal Summer

We were commissioned by Marketplace, part of the national Arts Council England programme Creative People & Places to produce a series of weekly events, during the school summer holidays, in Newmarket’s Memorial Gardens. The brief was to come up with interactive, fun activities for families to enjoy, that would be inclusive, entertaining and lighthearted. They also needed to celebrate the royal heritage of the town. And so, Newmarket; A Right Royal Adventure! was born.

Each week was themed around a different aspect of Newmarket’s royal history, brought to life with a bespoke story and then used as a jumping off point for a range of activities. In keeping with our brief, the tone was always light and humorous. For instance we, celebrated “King James and his Pukka Palace” and produced some Hot Hot Hot artwork to mark the Great Fire of Newmarket.

The jolly and jovial Sir Cedric Smallpiece was Master of Ceremonies for all six events; encouraging families to return each week to join in the regal revelry. We brought together a range of performers and practitioners to offer families a variety of activities including making hobby-horses and coats-of-arms, trying on theatrical costumes, painting, mask decorating, learning traditional dances and playing drama-based games.

Our final week, A Right Royal Celebration, had a fantastic party atmosphere with arts and crafts activities running alongside dancing and party games. Artwork from the previous weeks was displayed and the event culminated in our grand finale, A Right Royal Parade!

We loved making majestic mayhem in the Memorial Gardens this summer and we were delighted with the positive feedback we received from so many of the families we got to know. Newmarket is a great town and it was a joy to work with Marketplace, supported by Newmarket Town Council, to produce a programme of interactive, art-based fun for the local community to enjoy.