Report on 2016 Telegraph Hill Festival

Telegraph Hill Festival accounts, feedback from the recent survey, suggestions for next year and some demographic information of the Festival's audiences and the area

Report on 2016 Telegraph Hill Festival

The core of  the 2016 Telegraph Hill Festival took place between 9 and 23 March 2016, with a further weekend on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 April and a final fling on Saturday 21 May.   Easter was very early in 2016 and this involved us having to juggle a lot of dates around – it wasn’t easy.

Telegraph Hill Festival is organised by volunteers.   From the people who plan the Festival, and those working behind the bars, to event managers and participating venues – everyone volunteers.

Funds from this year’s Festival are ploughed back into making the next year’s Festival even better.   And each year, it is a bigger and better series of events.   But the group involved in making the Festival happen also needs help.   Read on …


2016 Telegraph Hill Festival Accounts

You’ll find the draft accounts here – please bear in mind the following:

  • £450 set aside for expenses still to come
  • Income over expenditure is showing an increase and this has been down to sound management
2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011
Total income 25900 21350 17063 19695 17600 14200
Total costs 18608 17349 14246 15631 11700 8700


  • in 2016 we worked hard to secure more sponsorship revenue (£2000) than 2015 or ever before
  • We also received generous in-kind support from the Festival’s lead sponsor, Goldsmiths, for the design and print of the programme and Open Studio map, as well as help with developing Sharing Stories (a film project with young and older members of the community in conversation)
  • in 2016, we also raised bar prices slightly to reflect the increased costs to us and tweaked some of the headline ticket pricing but held concession tickets at their previous rate.   Evidence suggests that there was no downturn in consumption or attendance – quite the opposite
  • We’ve also managed to raise quite a bit for good causes this year, more than £1000 for Southwark Day Centre for Asylum Seekers & Refugees (rattling buckets at 2 shows of Into the Woods as well as a couple of Church services), over £500 for Somerville Adventure Playground (Open Gardens) and £212 for the E15 campaigners (Sylvia Pankhurst Talk) … those figures are noted down against the event which generated them but are not counted as Festival income
  • We have distributed £1000 to St Catherine’s Church for the heat, light and wear and tear the building receives as it hosts the Community Production rehearsals and shows, and other large scale Festival events each year; We also gave Telegraph Hill Centre £1500 for the same reason and to acknowledge that we use their main spaces free of charge each year before and through the Festival (which costs them £3500 in lost income from rental of their main spaces); we also gave £1000 to Hill Station as a gesture of thanks and to acknowledge their support.   These are the three main host spaces for Telegraph Hill Festival and the contribution from both Church and Centre far outweighs what we donate to them.
  • We have a greater surplus from the 2016 Festival than we’ve ever had before.   We will need to maintain a contingency to ensure that we can stage next Year’s Festival.   But having a surplus is a rare occurence.   This needs to be invested wisely to continue to meet the aims of increasing diversity and representing all aspects of this area, as well as more prosaic matters like enhancing our insurance cover, paying for risk assessments for events which take place in more unusual settings, investing in workshops to engage more members of the community, and enabling more free participatory events to take place.


Festival Feedback (so far)

You can see the results of the recent e-survey here, they broadly reflect the tenor of conversations shortly after the Festival and also include some of the ideas people have suggested.   You can see more in the Festival Wash Up.

If it’s your idea we also would love it if you made it happen.   That’s the spirit of Telegraph Hill Festival.   We will be getting back to people who offered help, it’s much appreciated.


How you can get involved with the 2017 Festival

And we’d love it if you did!   We need your ideas and energy to make things happen.   We also need help with the following.   If you can help with some of these general areas, please get in touch

We need help with the following areas:

  • Box Office Manager – this is all about getting event tickets online and set to go for the big push.   It takes a little bit of time but is worth doing.   Though all tickets will be available online, there will also be some front of house cash sales at events.   It might be a role which would suit a small team of people (say 3 or 4 folks who can split the role between them?).   Are you up for organising this?
  • Project Manager – This role involves a lot of liaison via email to pull together the various strands of the programme into a coherent spreadsheet which forms the basis of the final programme.   It’s a key role and you’ll work closely with the Chair and organising Committee to devise the final programme for the 2017 Telegraph Hill Festival.
  • Love websites, social media and meeting people? Then we need you to work closely with the Festival’s Chair on marketing the Festival, updating the website and ensuring that we reach all the people and parts of the area that we can.   This will also involve working with the Chair and the rest of the Committee to devise real world outreach events and initiatives so is an all-round marketing sweet spot with lots of opportunities to come up with ideas and make them happen.
  • We also need help with the design of posters, signgage and other assets – so if you’re a design whizz with some time to spare and happy to either take a detailed brief or suggest and then develop your own ideas we’d love to hear from you.

PLEASE NOTE – Members of the Committee and all participants in the Festival are unpaid. We all do what we do because we love where we live and, like you, we’re all doing our bit to make it better as best we can.


Audience Analysis

“I saw lots of people I didn’t recognise at this year’s Festival. I’m not sure whether that’s because these are new people who have moved to the area or whether you managed to reach further this year. Either way, it was nice to see the community gathering around the Festival.

A full audience analysis and outline of feedback to the 2016 Festival is available here

We are one of your New Young Families and the Festival is one of the reasons we decided to put down roots here. It’s incredibly special. Thank you!