Packed programme for Ramsgate’s Festival of Sound

The Great Malarkey will headline Busk at Dusk. Photo credit TK Studio.

The Festival of Sound returns to Ramsgate from August 27 – September 4.

After two years of complying with Covid guidelines, the festival team, Andrew Gibson, Gemma Dempsey and Darryn de la Soul, are thrilled to welcome everyone back to a restriction-free week of family friendly festivities, many of which are free to attend.

Festival Director Andrew said: ‘I’m delighted the festival is happening again this year. Demand for funding has been huge and we are so grateful to all who have supported the event through our crowdfunder and for volunteering. We literally couldn’t do it without you!

“We have a spectacular week of events planned, most of which are free for all to enjoy. We are also hugely grateful to our festival sponsor, La Marzocco!’

As well as coffee machine producer La Marzocco the festival was fortunate to be funded by Ramsgate Town Council, Arts Council England, Kent County Council, members of the public via a crowd funder campaign and the festival’s Angel members.

Events schedule

Ellington Park

The opening weekend begins on Saturday, August 27 at Ellington Park with a day of family filled fun – Baby and Toddler Sensory Ramfamdisco, Taiko Drumming Workshop, Don’t Rain on My Parade featuring songs from much loved musicals and the festival debut of Boogie Booth – so don’t forget your dancing shoes! In the evening Screaming Alley Cabaret celebrates Britney Spears in ‘Oops We Did It Again!’. If last year’s homage to George Michael is anything to go by, this will be an evening not to be missed!

On Sunday, August 28 there will be festival classic, Busk at Dusk. In previous year’s this has been on the last day of the festival , a school night – this year it’s a  bank holiday so no excuse not to come down to East Cliff promenade to hear a wonderful selection of musical artists performing in the shelters along the cliff face.

The area can be reached along from Marina Esplanade car park, or by the east cliff’s chine steps. Artists include Wantsum Music?, Richie Triangle, Lynne Wallis, Benedict Welling, Annie and Geary, Wyatt Riot, with the headliner of the evening being provided by The Great Malarkey.  There will also be Bernie Gardner’s Bass Face – a Busk at Dusk special event.  And festival favourites  The Thanet Intelligence Task Squad are back and Fools Folly also return.

Over the first weekend food and beverages will be supplied by Dirtee Feast, The Pub, Ramsgate, and La Marzocco.

Bank Holiday Monday join musician Andrew Waterworth and friends in Charlotte Court for some Latin vibes – come and listen or participate! 3pm-5pm.

Ramsgate author Maggie Gee

The Ramsgate Society will once again host talks at Royal Temple Yacht Club; Maggie Gee on her new novel ‘The Red Children’ (31st August) and Rob Kenyon (Heritage Lab)  and Kevin O’Connor  (Ramsgate Arts Barge) talking about their respective roles in renovation and regenerating unique heritage spaces (2nd September).

On Wednesday, August 31 the festival teams up with Fools Folly Chuckle Club and expect a night of stellar stand-up comedy from the cosy, speakeasy surroundings of downstairs at The Bedford Inn.

Grab a drink and get your laughing gear ready for a raucous night of thrills, spills, laughter, and Meerkats in Tutus. Follow Fools Folly on all social media to keep up to date with everything related to Chuckle Club including how to book tickets, and line-up announcements.

On Thursday, September 1 there is a night of female led work.

At The Bedford Inn Alpha Femme, written and performed by Megan Garrett-Jones, returns to Ramsgate, hot from the Edinburgh Fringe. Later that evening get yourselves over to the Ramsgate Music Hall for ‘FLESH’ by Olivia Suki Squier and Pete Wareham.

Busk at Dusk in 2021 Photo Frank Leppard

September 1-4, the Sonic Trail features another eclectic mix of sound installations at various venues and locations around Ramsgate featuring the work of Ruth Rollason, Caitlin Osborne, Bernie Gardner, Andrew Waterworth, Paul Naudin and Julian Hand, Project Motor House’s ‘Treasures’  and Harbour Lights, created by Mischievous Theatre.

Addington Street Community’s jolly yellow caravan Cozi Van Tutti will be the venue for  festival producer Gemma Dempsey’s ghostly smuggler’s tale, written for Ramsgate Through the Senses and The Radiophonic Institute’s The Estuary Sound Ark.

For the first time in the festival’s five year history it will present not one but two events at St George’s Church.

Saturday, September 3, ‘Crying Out Loud’ will be sung by Neptunes Choir. Created by Naomi Hammerton, this new choral work was inspired by the work of artist Rose-Lynn Fisher, The Topography of Tears, which showed how tears look different under a microscope depending on the emotion that has created them.

Sunday, September 4 is the festival’s last night and it will go out with a cosmic big bang!

‘From the Sea to the Stars’ will feature new and original work and is headlined by violinist extraordinaire Anna Phoebe. She, along with her band,  will play music from her ‘Sea Souls ‘album which she wrote during 2020, inspired by the sea near her home in Deal.

Ramsgate based composer and producer Nicholas de Carlo has teamed up with the Modulus Quartet to launch seven new string quartet pieces for 2022, The Gargarin Quartets, charting the first orbit of earth by ‘starman’ Yuri Gagarin during the height of the cold war.

The show will open with Andrew Waterworth, double bass player with Penguin Cafe, improvising to a specially edited version of a film about the Hadron Collider called The God Particle.

‘From the Sea to the Stars’ promises to be a wonderful night of music.

Details and tickets

For the latest information and tickets go to or drop in to Sugar Rush

66 High Street, Ramsgate, between August 22nd – 26th 11 am – 2pm and Sept 1-4, noon – 5pm to talk to one of the festival volunteers and pick up a brochure.


  1. Looking at that first picture you wouldnt get me standing under that crumbling concrete and lintal. The place looks dirty covered in graffiti and looks ready to fall down.

    Or is that just trendy people trying to get down with the kids lol and look abit with it and arty

    • Oh hang on is that graffiti falling down derelict shelter at the west cliff ? Great advert for ramsgate.

      • Unfortunately it’s suffered an arson attack since that picture was taken. It looks much much oh so much worse now.

    • Lol. Someone wasn’t popular at school… “The cool kids wouldn’t let me play with them so when I grow up I’m going to be a miserable Tory. That’ll show ‘em!”

  2. Sounds good. Always enjoy the events at Ellington.

    How bored / boring must you be to rush to add something negative to something positive going on. That sort of attitude is holding Ramsgate back.

    Come on folks, cheer up, try and enjoy yourselves.

    • Fortunately, the number of people who appreciate Ramsgate far outnumber the miserable souls who see nothing but doom and gloom.
      A couple of relatives of mine came down for a few days: they thought it was absolutely lovely. As did a crew of German sailors we encountered in a Ramsgate pub.
      No one was stabbed. There were no fights.
      Just ordinary people out enjoying themselves.
      And when we walked back through the town centre later in the evening, not a single soul attacked us. Just like every other time we’ve walked around the town.

  3. i think i will swerve that one , looks a bit selective to me ? , and i agree about trying to get down with the kids and appearing hip

  4. I went to Ellington Park last year with a group of friends, some of whom had young children. We were really looking forward to seeing Screaming Alley. Well, with a few notable exceptions, it was pretty dire and, at times, pretty X-rated. Much of the humour was of the ‘gay’ variety – nothing against that in the right venue, which this wasn’t. A grown man running around with his bare naked behind on display in front of a bunch of families with children was another offering. Someone needs to rethink that part of the act. Then, we were treated to a couple whose singing skills was risible. The female half then decided to tell the audience off for daring to vote Brexit. Her command of four-letter Saxon swearwords was way better than her singing voice. A highlight – perhaps not for the parents – was a performer, who having encouraged young kids to come and dance in front of the bandstand, then announced that they had all won a puppy. Belatedly, he said they should check with their parents first – cue a bunch of disappointed kiddies’ faces. This year, I will stay home and watch back-to-back clips of old codgers dozing in the House of Lords. Much more entertaining.

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