Free beach arts festival returns for fourth year

Multi-coloured flags ripple in the breeze in front of white marquees at Lowestoft beach
Thousands of people are expected at the fourth First Light Festival, which is staged at Lowestoft seafront [GUY CAMPBELL/BBC]

First Light, the UK's only free beach festival, is returning to Lowestoft for the fourth year.

Organisers of the 24-hour event are expecting more than 40,000 people to attend this weekend.

The festival is held on the weekend closest to the summer solstice on the UK’s most easterly beach.

It showcases performances from around the world and from the local area, including a dance tent, a deep sea-themed silent disco and daybreak yoga, with events kicking off with a parade.

Festival organiser wearing a blue top and sunglasses standing on sandy beach
Festival chief executive Genevieve Christie said it was a special event which helped to bring people of all ages together [GUY CAMPBELL/BBC]

The festival is being held on 22 and 23 June with outdoor events centred around the South Beach and Kensington Gardens.

The parade starts at East Point Pavilion before moving down the beach and heading towards the Sunlight Stage to kick off the festival at 12:00 BST on Saturday.

"First Light is a free festival so please come along," said chief executive Genevieve Christie.

"We have so much to offer with themes like science, sport, dance, music and art, so there's a lot for people to explore and [there are] things they might not have come across before."

The theme of north, south, east and west will be threaded through the programme, with "a strong international line-up with a very cosmopolitan flavour", organisers said.

The festival features local and emerging talent as well as bigger-name acts, some of which appear at ticketed events, including comedian Shaparak Khorsandi at the Seagull Theatre.

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