Despite freezing temperatures and impending Storm Isha, over 1500 people attended the Ebbsfleet Magical Winter Festival on Saturday 20th January.

The Ebbsfleet Magical Winter Festival which was produced by Cohesion Plus in partnership with Ebbsfleet Development Corporation, supported by Arts Council England and KKB Group ran between 4pm and 8pm.

The aim of the event was to bring some much needed dazzle, magic and splendour to the coldest winter month, encouraging families in the locality to come out and interact with the some truly elaborate and fantastical, immersive light installations in and around Platinum Jubilee Park.

There was also a stellar artistic programme, highlights including DJ Deep, the spectacular Mystic Mirror Show which featured a fully mobile life size snow globe as well as a collaborative production called the Fire Fusion Show which consisted of live fire dancers and The Kings of Dhol.

Also providing sounds from the streets of New Orleans were live brass band Native Oysters, a violin and pop catalogue mash up performed by the incomparable Yohanne Liam Osafo. Bringing the electric energy of Bollywood was local resident Yoshina Bhopal and her dancers. They were joined by an array of street performances ranging from Stilt Walkers, LED Hula Hoop dancer and an aerial acrobat.

In addition, there was a wonderful offer of food from around the world provided by local vendors, including Indian, Italian and British dishes as well as indulgent cakes and some much needed hot drinks.

Gurvinder Sandher MBE DL Artistic Director of Cohesion Plus commented, “What an amazing evening! We are so proud of what we were able to achieve despite the cold weather. The feedback from local residents and partners has been amazing. It was a challenging event to produce due to issues outside of our control, but no one who attended would have been aware as we were able to overcome the obstacles and do what we do, using the arts to connect communities both young and old during what is traditionally one of the most miserable months of the year.

Jo Cowan Cultural Development Manager at Ebbsfleet Development Corporation commented “We are really pleased with the positive feedback received from the local community and are delighted that so many turned out to experience and see the fantastic light installations and performances despite the cold! It was great to work in partnership with Cohesion Plus and we look forward to continuing to deliver a local programme of events throughout the year for residents and the community to enjoy.’