Thurrock Festival

by Thames to all peoples of the World

Thurrock Festival 2020

19th Sep 2020

We are super excited that it looks very likely that we will be able to have the first Thurrock Festival this year after all!

With Covid-19 causing havoc to our best laid plans, we have had to postpone Thurrock Festival to Sat 19th Sep and reduce our live activities.

But this has given us a wonderful opportunity of establishing Thurrock Festival Digital (TFD 2020) with its interactive galleries and extensive sweep of creative work. Some of these will be under the banner of C19CC which stands for Covid-19 Creative Collection, activities produced during lockdown.


In partnership with Kinetika’s T100 Mandalas project, a substantial public participatory mandala will be created at Grays Wharf along the Thames, south of Grays High Street.

On the day, look out for our large recycled puppet, MANDI, that will be brought stunningly to life. She is the acronym for Mandala Adored Nobel Deity Icon and produced by local artists Cece Luna. You may correctly guess that MANDI will be swaying her way from north of Grays High Street down to Grays Wharf where she will be fluttering over the public mandala. Devised out of upcycled plastic material MANDI promises to be a rocking AAAHA mascot.

A banner of Ketna Patel’s 4 metre W.T.F. artwork will add a brilliant splash of pop art colour to Grays Wharf. Specially composed music of Mandala Moments by artistic director Hi Ching plus music from Kirit Singh and Ganga Thapa will provide a calming atmosphere for relaxing creativity.

The mandala will mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.


A number of exciting digital exhibitions is programmed for TFD 2020. Please revisit us to catch up with the most recent updates.


Exhibits will include some exciting local C19CC projects. C19CC stands for Covid_19 Creative Collection. VSDFArts, Culture and Heritage grants supported a host of lockdown digital activities which TFD 2020 will be profiling.

Thurrock Island is a participatory project involving the community’s response to a fictional scenario of climate change and rising water levels. Thurrock Island is the only land left in this area. It is inhabited by Landfolk and Merfolk. They learn to survive by supporting each other. The island is populated by images contributed by participants for a Thurrock Island e-book.

Artist Ketna Patel’s bold W.T.F. work will be featured with an explanation of the canny symbolism she has used.

Kara Thompson’s delightful drawings will be laid out in a digital exhibition you can wander through.

Fashion designer Selika Rai’s recent experience of travelling to Nepal and being locked down there will be shown in her photo exhibition. Her personal responses will accompany these images.

Lata Upadhyaya’s captivating Transit: Identity of a White Van two year project will be distilled in a number of artistic illustrations specially created for TFD 2020.

Look out for a birthday greeting video to mark St Cedd’s 1400 birthday by Hi Ching. St Cedd established Christianity in Thurrock with the building of a church.


We are delighted to be able to work with SOAS Music Department to facilitate the presentation of a variety of musical styles that reflect the diversity of Thurrock residents.

Watch out for Ganga Thapa’s new song specially composed and performed for TFD 2020. After living for many years in Britain, he is now back in Nepal creating unique music for both countries.

Kirit Singh, a specialist in Dhrupad & Dhamar music, will be performing Gurbani Sangit sacred music of the Sikhs as well as recounting his exciting experiences in the Punjab.

Local singer JB Rose will sing the uplifting new single she wrote in lockdown.

You will also be able to enjoy the sultry voice of Sophie Griffiths, singer songwriter from Grays.

Quest Radio provides a lively musical experience with local DJs.

This programme of activities may be subject to change owing to unforeseen circumstances


Kinetika | Cece Luna | Thurrock CVS | Thurrock Council

Over time, Thurrock has woven rich tapestries of pilgrims trails, pirates, the Commonwealth and maritime activities. Stretched along the Thames, it is garlanded with historical ports, wildlife sanctuaries and a diversity of peoples.

The team is busy planning 2021 and are looking for anyone that would be interested in taking part, either by running an activity of their own, performing at the event, or having a stall to promote their community group.

Contact Us

Please download and complete this expression of interest form to take part by clicking here.

Feel free to contact us if you have any queries.


Thurrock Council | Thurrock CVS

Produced by AAAHA | Thurrock Council

Photographs | Dave Reynolds |

Thurrock Festival

Open Hours

Sat: 11.00 am – 5.00 pm


Grays Wharf | online