About Great Yarmouth Arts Festival

The Arts Festival grew out of an idea of trying to raise money for the Great Yarmouth Minster Preservation Trust but, at the first meeting with a group of artists, one of them said “You will not make money out of art”. Nevertheless, plans expanded to include not only visual art but music, theatre, films and heritage. The aims were to encourage people to develop an interest in art in all its forms and to take an active part in them. We want to show what remarkable talent exists in the Borough, to bring the various communities together, for the local population to develop a sense of pride in their town, to raise the aspirations of the young and to encourage more visitors to the town.

Carnival Parade near King Street from GYAF 2019. Photo by David Street.

The first Festival was held in September 2012 and lasted 3 three weeks. In 2014 we moved to the beginning of June and reduced the length to ten days.   We also started a Carnival procession which has grown in size and colour each year.

The Arts Festival belongs to the local people and we are very grateful to the many volunteers who work tirelessly to put it on. We are also very grateful to the sponsors and Great Yarmouth Borough Council who help us financially, with gifts in kind and with advice.

The Team

The Arts Festival is a Community Interest Company and is run by a group of directors.

Hugh Sturzaker

Chairman & Director

Lewis Ashdown

Treasurer & Director

Joanna Jones


Paul Davies


Jane Freeman


There are two main committees – One overseeing the whole Festival and another managing the Carnival. In addition there are subgroups dealing with: music programme, art in the Minster, Art on the Railings, theatre productions, fund raising, promotion and overseeing the volunteers.

Click Here to see a full list of committee members.