26 - 29


Reading Thames Festival is an annual cross-arts programme presenting works from across the spectrum of music, performance, literature, popular culture, design and visual arts.

The festival takes place across Reading’s cultural, unusual and outdoor spaces to create exhilarating audience experiences and unexpected encounters.

Our conviction is in the power of creativity to offer new perspectives on everyday life and the festival aims to act as a catalyst for a new spirit of collaboration and partnership across Reading. Driven by an ethos of exchange and collaboration, the festival aims to provoke healthy debate focused on cultural and social progress, spark new ideas, new perspectives and embed a spirit of playfulness, experimentation and openness across the programme.

We are proud to have programmed and commissioned renowned performers, artists, writers, activists and philosophers including Inua Ellams, Laura Mugridge, Theodore Zeldin, Cirque Bijou and In Place of War.

2019 Focus
Taking inspiration from the Thames’ grand heritage as a rich source of creative inspiration, holding a mirror to utopian dreams and dystopic nightmares, our programme this year encourages audiences to revel in the restorative charms of Reading’s rivers and to peer darkly into submerged secrets and drowned worlds beneath the waves.
In 2019, our programme looks to the changing tides of the Thames, addressing the themes of deception, change and transformation, exploring how music, performance and the arts can bring people together in times of social unrest and are essential conduits for self-expression in challenging times.

Reading Thames Festival is a Reading UK CIC project and a part of Reading Great Places programme, a partnership between the University, Reading UK CIC and Reading Borough Council who were successful in securing a three year funding package from a new alliance between Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic England and Arts Council called Great Places, a pilot scheme designed to enable cultural and community groups to work more closely together.

Contact Us

For all enquires please use the following contact details:


Steph Weller Producer

Please contact Steph regarding production.

Sarah Stuffins Community and Volunteer Co-ordinator

Please contact Sarah regarding Community and Volunteer.

Noora Press and Media

Please contact Noora regarding Press and Media.