Back & Fill

Back & Fill

Back & Fill is a one-off series of locally organised festivals for interesting times, inspired by the currents of seaside life. 

Celebrating the resilience of seaside communities, it is programmed to happen at the end of what looks to be a tough summer season. Each Back & Fill is very different, local response but under them all is a network that supports artists and makers, independent shops, small arts venues and seaside tourism businesses.

We’ve called it Back & Fill because that’s a sailing term, for using the advantage of the tide being with you when the wind is not. That seemed to be about right, for where we are now.

Back & Fill is being created with this open source toolkit, available to any seaside town wanting to create their own festival. It provides a framework, tools to engage audiences, logos and branding. We’ll also deliver some online training films based on our combined fifty years of programming seaside festivals in Margate and Worthing (between us, we have made things like GEEK, Worthing Art Trail and Open Houses, and Pushing Print).

Back & Fill will happen in the autumn school holiday, between 23rd October and 1st November 2020 (if we’re still in crisis, the backup date is February 2021).

Projects Info

What We’re Doing

Back & Fill is a national festival we’re making together. It’s made up of smaller local festivals.

So Back & Fill [My Town] is your local festival – we’re starting Back & Fill Margate. Each local event has a co-ordinator who matches artists and independents, and lets audiences know. It can be a simple role (you could do one day of things in one venue) or become more complex (a town-wide festival with multiple venues and lots of artists) – that’s up to you.

So the first step is to look at the map on – if your seaside town is not there, and you want it to be, you can become the co-ordinator. If you do, drop us an email at Back & Fill HQ ( and we’ll send all enquiries about your town to you.