Get Involved

While we continue to follow government guidance on the COVID-19 pandemic, in the interests of the wellbeing of our employees, artists, partners and the public, we are taking precautionary measures and have postponed all our public programme until further notice. During this time we are also adopting an optional remote working policy for staff.

We are confident that we can continue to do much of our work outside the usual office environment and are also exploring all the ways in which some of our programmes can temporarily be adapted to take place in a digital or remote space.

Please be assured we are working closely with partners to get a clearer position on longer-term programme and activities and we will stay in regular touch as events unfold.

In the meantime, we fully support the position ACE has taken to best support the sector during these challenging and unprecedented times, which can be found here:

We are reviewing the situation on a daily basis and will post any updates here on our website.

Thank you for your understanding.


Estuary 2021 – Associated Programme – Open Call

Estuary 2020 – Associated Programme – Open Call
Estuary 2021 – Associated Programme – Open Call

Expression of Interest Form will reopen soon. We'll be in touch with everyone who has applied so far.

Estuary 2021 is the second edition of the large-scale arts festival that celebrates the spectacular Thames Estuary. Taking place on the river itself, and along the 60 miles of South Essex and North Kent coastline, it is an ambitious programme of artworks and events that explore and respond to powerful themes resonant to the estuary including industrial heartland, nationally important heritage sites, protected wildlife and open marshland, together with seaside fronts and port towns.

The festival includes installations, exhibitions, events and an accompanying film and talks programme. Artworks set in the landscape, or on the river itself, artist-led walks and field trips explore the rich, diverse culture of the region and bring new audiences to significant sites fostering a deeper understanding of the estuary.

Estuary 2020 is managed by estuary-based arts organisations, Metal (South Essex) and Cement Fields (North Kent) working in partnership with a wide range of artists, arts organisations, local authorities, river agencies and businesses.

We know we are not the only ones fascinated by the pull of the estuary and that many artists and organisations in the region are creating brilliant works and programmes in response to being by the water. Alongside our Estuary 2020 programme, to be announced in spring 2020, we’ve put some of our funding aside to produce a marketing guide (in print and online) to shout about and share other programmes exploring the same theme, for those who are interested to take up the opportunity.

If you are organising an exhibition, screening, talk, gig, walk, performance or other arts and heritage event we’d love to hear from you – and help give audiences a huge choice of activities across the Estuary 2021 festival month.

In order for it to make some sense as a collection of events, we’ve put some loose criteria around it, as follows:-

  1. Date: your activity must take place during Estuary 2021 dates. Note: it can be one day – or a longer running event, as long as it has dates to offer within the Estuary 2021 range.
  2. Themes: your activity must have some thematic relationship to the Thames Estuary – which can be broad, expansive and open to many interpretations.
  3. Geography: there is much debate around the geography of the Thames Estuary – where it begins and ends - our definition is driven by what we think will make sense to audiences. See our map below – your activity should sit within the area defined.

How to be included:-

Please fill in and submit our simple form below as an Expression of Interest. This will provide us with a good idea of how many activities we might need to include and what they are. If any of the requested details (like exact venue etc.) are unknown at this early stage – please just explain that within the text boxes available.

We will then be in touch later in the year to request full marketing information, written copy and hi-res imagery to include with an Associated Programme printed programme. Deadline: TBC

What we can offer:

  • Marketing support (festival programme in print and online)
  • An Associated Programme Digital Marketing Toolkit
  • Sharing and amplification of your programme to live and online audiences (Estuary 2016 attracted 100K live audiences and a media reach of 23.7million)

Please note: We are unable to provide any financial support for events. All event organisers will be responsible for arranging your own insurance, any event licences required and all fees and production costs involved.

MORE ABOUT Estuary 2021

The Estuary sea and landscape looms large in the daily emotional and practical life of South Essex and North Kent, with the ebb and flow of the tides impacting on the rhythm of life, leisure and work. One of the world’s most iconic and ‘hardest working’ rivers, often referred to as the liquid highway, its waters bind and connect the communities along its banks. Across the estuary, we share the sensibilities, the challenges, as well as the opportunities that living close to such a force brings. The artworks for 2021 will be commissioned and curated in response to the Estuary and its myriad of histories, landscapes, seascapes, stories, myths and realities.

Estuary 2021 is an ambitious, highly visible and transformational programme of work, linked to an innovative skills programme delivered through a wide range of arts and agency partnerships across the region.

Estuary 2021 is possible through Creative Estuary, the DCMS- funded Cultural Development Fund, an ambitious long-term project to make the Thames Estuary the world’s largest creative corridor; a world leader for the creative and cultural industries. A broad constituency of partners have come together to support Estuary festival on a four-year cycle, linked by a commitment to shared cultural development aims that are underpinned by the concept of the Thames Estuary Production Corridor (TEPC). The TEPC will create a world-class industrial hub for the creative and cultural industries, creating jobs and developing new talent to benefit the Estuary region, London and the wider South East.

Estuary 2021 is led by a partnership between estuary-based arts organisations, Metal (South Essex) and Cement Fields (North Kent).

Full programme to be announced in Autumn 2020.

Image credits:
(top of page): Simon Fowler, 2016
(all images below): Jonathan Juniper, 2019

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