A Guide to This Year’s Festival of Chichester

One of West Sussex’s cultural highlights of the year, running 15 June to 14 July, Festival of Chichester is a month-long showcase of local and international artists. With dozens of events within walking, cycling and driving distance of our luxury holiday cottages, make Quay Quarters your base for discovering the delights of this fantastic Chichester Festival.

Founded in 2013, Festival of Chichester has quickly become a fixture of the Sussex cultural calendar. The festival has always been run by enthusiastic volunteers with generous support from organisations such as the local council, Chichester Cathedral, Chichester Observer, and more. This year’s line-up features hundreds of different shows spread across dozens of venues.

The sheer diversity of the line-up means there’s something to suit every taste. From spoken word events with international authors to school music performances and everything in between, you’re bound to find something worth attending during your stay at one of Quay Quarters’ 5-star holiday cottages.

What’s on at Chichester Festival Theatre?

The heart-warming This Is My Family (20 April to 15 June) is a play about – you guessed it – a dysfunctional family who win the holiday of a lifetime. David Hare’s play Plenty (7 to 29 June) makes it debut at Chichester Festival Theatre this summer, with a dazzling plot involving an ex-secret agent in post-war London. For a good old-fashioned sing-along there’s Oklahoma! (15 July to 7 September) – we love a classic Rodgers & Hammerstein romp!

One of Britain’s best-loved local theatres, Chichester Festival Theatre is a mere 10 minutes’ drive from our Sussex holiday cottages. You’re sure to find a great show no matter when you’re staying with us, with plenty of family-friendly productions on throughout the year. See our recent blog for the full-run down of what’s on at Chichester Festival Theatre in 2019.

What’s on in West Wittering?

Art-lovers are sure to fall for Between Shore and Sky (15 to 30 June), a new exhibition of paintings by local artist Frances knight exploring the majesty of landscapes and seascapes in locations such as Chichester Harbour. Hot on its heels in On The Beach ( 4 to 21 July), an exhibition of photography and paintings based on the great British coastline by the mother-and-daughter team Maggie and Helena Cochran. Both exhibitions are in The Little Art Gallery in West Wittering, a beautiful seaside village with a famous beach just 15 minutes’ drive from Quay Quarters’ luxury self-catering holiday cottages and B&B accommodation.

What’s on at Chichester Cathedral?

The cultural and historical heart of the city, Chichester Cathedral is within easy reach of Quay Quarters holiday cottages. the atmospheric surrounds of the main hall plays host to a delightful range of classical music during Festival of Chichester. Highlights include solo performances from the Prebendal School Senior Musicians (20 June), a huge choir recital by the Chichester Singers (22 June) and another appearance by acclaimed Russian pianist Victor Ryabchikov (4 July).

If spoken word’s your thing, don’t miss Victoria Hislop in conversation with Chichester’s own Kate Mosse (19 June) as well as Dame Patricia Routledge presenting an Evening of Poetry and Music (9 July), part of South Downs Poetry Festival. Last year was the 100th anniversary of universal suffrage, and A Woman’s Place is in the Cathedral! (26 June & 10 July) pays tribute with a showcase of works designed and made by women including: sculpture, stained glass and embroidery.

Lastly, what better place than the cathedral for a spot of bird watching ! There are a number of open days in May and June devoted to the famous Chichester Cathedral Peregrines that nest and raise their chicks in the spire.

What’s on at Weald and Downland Museum?

This popular local museum sees a number of events and shows throughout the Festival of Chichester period. The museum’s Historic Life weekends run all through the summer, giving you the chance to experience how people lived hundreds of years ago. We’re also looking forward to original drama Poisoned Beds (21 June), a local play set in 1818, followed by a lively Q&A with writer Greg Mosse. Animal-lovers and our dog-friendly bed and breakfast guests shouldn’t miss the famous Rare & Traditional Breeds Show (14 July), a mainstay of the Chichester summer calendar. See our hand-picked list of the best events at Weald and Downland Living Museum in 2019 for more ideas.

What’s on at West Dean Gardens?

The bucolic setting of West Dean Gardens plays host to some amazing outdoor theatre productions as well as unmissable summer concerts. Be entranced by the gentle strumming of Guitars in the Garden (15 & 23 June, 13 & 14 July) as these virtuosos take you on a global music tour from Bach to blues, Django Reinhardt to modern. Fall under the Bard’s spell for Twelfth Night (1,3,5,9 & 11 July), or soak up the epic farce and slapstick of Tons of Money (2,4,6,8,10 & 12 July), both part of the Pergola Open Air Theatre.

If you find the time, why not wander over from West Dean Gardens to nearby West Dean College, where the Visual Arts Summer Show (6 to 12 July) will be in full swing-curated by students and free to enter! Visitors to our Sussex holiday cottages can also get stuck into some arts and crafts at one of West Deans College’s summer schools, most of which continue long after the festival has finished.

Book now for luxury B&B accommodation during the annual Chichester Festival!

With such a rich line-up of talent, there;s no better to stay at our luxury bed and breakfast or in one of our holiday cottages than during Festival of Chichester. Only 10 minutes’ drive from the South Downs National Park and a pebble’s throw from Chichester Harbour’s Outstanding Area of Natural Beauty, our cottages are ideally located to explore this beautiful corner of West Sussex while soaking up some culture.

In fact, you don’t even have to leave the cottage grounds to enjoy nature, with our rose garden likely in full bloom by the time Chichester festival hits. Book your luxury holiday cottage or B&B accommodation break at Quay Quarters today and enjoy the time of your life this summer.