Little people and giant bunting as the Festival of Thrift prepares to get underway

Giant Bunting (Credit Tracy Kidd)

With over 140 things to see, do and enjoy, including an array of giant bunting, organisers of this year’s Festival of Thrift are urging people to plan ahead to get the most out of their visit.

The fourth outing of the hugely popular, family-friendly, free to enter event is taking place on 17 and 18 September at Kirkleatham Museum and Grounds, near Redcar.

As the team behind the event begins the final week of preparations for the packed schedule taking place over the weekend, the full programme of activities including a site map and event timings has been made available for visitors to download for free.

Festival of Thrift director Stella Hall said that the aim is to make it as easy as possible for people to see as much as they can during their time at the event.

“There is so much to enjoy and lots of fun to be had as well as lots to learn about and take away to use and share with others so we wanted to make it as straightforward as possible for people to find out what’s on.

“We’ve included something for everybody across the weekend including den building and foraging for food, stunning art and amazing crafts, money saving tips and talks and a variety of workshops, upcycled and vintage fashion, live music and dance; the list is almost endless.”

Stella added: “Seeing everything will need some forward planning but it’s a challenge that will definitely pay off.”

The Festival preparation has included a project by artist Pauline Taylor from Infinite Arts who has been working this week with students from Huntcliff secondary school, Saltburn primary school, Prior Pursglove and Stockton Sixth Form College to create giant bunting to be displayed on the walls of the walled garden on the site.

Pauline’s beautiful flags will also welcome visitors across the Festival site.  Throughout the event she will be in the Starzebo working with visitors to create 170 WISH flags, one for each year of steelmaking on Teesside.  Each flag will carry words and images drawn and painted to feature the thoughts, wishes, and dreams of the people who take part.

In Tibet these are called Dar Cho. “Dar” means to increase life, fortune and health. “Cho” means for all sentient beings.  When the wind rustles a flag it is said to carry the thoughts and wishes from the flag to other places and people.

Visitors are invited to drop in to paint and decorate their flag using non-toxic water based permanent pens and then walk around to see all the flags and read the wishes.

The Festival of Thrift runs from 10am to 5pm on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 September.

The full programme, site map and events schedule are available to download at

Diary date listing and event details

Event: Festival of Thrift
Date: Saturday 17 & Sunday 18 September 2016
Place: Kirkleatham Museum and Grounds, Redcar, North East TS10 5NW
Time: 10am – 5pm
Cost: Free event. Parking £5 per car. £2 per motorcycle.
Details: , Twitter @Thriftfest , Facebook @festivalofthrift
Programme, site map and events schedule: available to download at

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Photos (Credit Tracy Kidd) of one of the giant bunting outreach projects are available to download here:
 Photos of the Festival of Thrift (Credit Tracy Kidd) and logos are available to download here: and here:

Media enquiries:
Rachel Smith, , 07905215712



* The Festival of Thrift is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England, and enabled through a partnership with Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council,
* It is sponsored by University of Teesside, UK Steel, Coast and Country, Gumtree and Northumbrian Water and supported through awards from Middlesbrough and Teesside Philanthropic Foundation and Teesside Community Foundation via the Teesside Offshore Wind Farm community benefit fund.
* Additional support in kind has been made available by PD Ports and Seaview Restaurant, Saltburn on Sea.
* The Festival was born in Darlington in 2012 and is growing up across the Tees Valley region, with a move to Kirkleatham for its fourth event.
* In 2015 the Festival won the Arts Award in the Observer Ethical Awards, which celebrate the people, organisations and campaigners who are leading the way to ensure we have an ethical future.
* The Festival won gold for the North East Tourist Event of 2015.

2016 event

* The Festival of Thrift takes place on Saturday September 17 and Sunday September 18 2016 10am – 5pm at Kirkleatham Museum and Grounds near Redcar on the north east coast.
* It is located in the tranquil village of Kirkleatham, in and around Kirkleatham Museum and Grounds, a Grade II listed building which dates from 1709 and now houses Kirkleatham Museum.
* Kirkleatham village has one of the best collections of Georgian-style buildings in England and the almshouses on the Festival site, which were were built in 1676, are architecturally and historically notable.
* Sustainable transport options are available to help festival goers get to the site,

Useful links:

About the festival:
Footage of Festival of Thrift 2015:
Festival team:
Annual report 2015:
Observer ethical award 2015:


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