A stone’s throw from the sea and less than an hour from London, Folkestone’s Creative Quarter is home to hundreds of creatives who contribute to and support the creative community, making Folkestone a great place to live, work and visit.
The Creative Quarter is for the seekers, the lovers of the considered and handcrafted. Give yourself time to leisurely stroll down the cobbled Old High Street, take a seat in the most enticing cafes, pick up a book, enjoy delicious coffee and cake. Leave time and space to find yourself in conversation with strangers.
In this urban village of designer-makers, technophiles and artists, shops are not just sales outlets, galleries are studios, bars are performance spaces, and cafes are bookshops. The Creative Quarter is a hive of imagination and inspiration – where filmmakers collaborate with photographers, who go on to work with theatre producers; where fashion designers bump into copywriters who can sort their website content.
Developed by the Creative Foundation – a charity launched in 2002 to regenerate Folkestone through creativity – the Creative Quarter is a unique attraction for visitors and a fantastic example of creatively-led regeneration, with a thriving community that shares an ethos of encouraging, supporting and enabling creative activity. With affordable rents for flats, shops and studio spaces, Creative Quarter tenants are specially selected to bring a mix of flavours to this melting pot of creative talents in the historic heart of Folkestone.
Respecting the area’s heritage, the Creative Foundation have preserved the shop fronts of the historical buildings that make up the Creative Quarter, while giving them a new lease of life by opening them up for different businesses, practices, events and activities. The Creative Quarter is also home to more contemporary architecture, such as Folkestone Quarterhouse – a modern venue with a regular programme of theatre, comedy, music and festivals, including Folkestone Book Festival, Normal? Festival of the Brain, and SALT Festival of the Sea and Environment.
As well as a bustling district of independent shops, cafes, micropubs, galleries, studios and event spaces, the Creative Quarter is also home to The Glassworks Sixth Form Centre and The Cube – Kent County Council’s Adult Education Centre. Both offer a wide range of subjects and activities for adults and young people, nurturing and facilitating education and development opportunities in the town.
By working with partners and investing in people, buildings and public programmes, the Creative Quarter is a sustainable model and community that provides a progressive vision, an affordable space and an environment for growth.