Summer might be over, but vegan festivals in the UK are still going strong. The Kind Heart Festival, a new vegfest, will take place on October 6 at Hailsham Town Centre to highlight the vegan lifestyle beyond the plant-based mecca of London.
The single-day event promises to pack in a wide variety of entertainments. The website promotes a Peace Parade, film festival, photography and art exhibitions, and well-being and children’s areas. And of course, as with any proper plant-based festival, there will be plenty of vegan-friendly vendors and live music.
The Kind Heart Festival aims to cultivate an experience that extends beyond vegan street food; it is about the philosophy behind one’s choice to go vegan. Event organizers wrote on Facebook, “The whole idea behind this festival is to promote living kindly and compassionately, helping to create a better world – for ourselves, for each other, for our beautiful planet and especially for all the animals we share our home with.”
Vendors and performers have yet to be announced, but the Facebook updates sound promising. “It really is very exciting as to how big this event is getting,” wrote the organizers, “definitely a sign of changing times regarding the positive engagement we have been receiving from the local community.”
Though London may be teeming with vegan restaurants and markets, the UK as a nation is becoming more vegan-friendly, even in suburban areas such as Hailsham. The Isle of Wight is now home to a completely vegan restaurant, Pulse, and also has a regional app that helps users find “free-from” options in the area. In the quaint town of Leamington Spa, an artisan vegan market and deli just opened its doors. And in Crickhowell, a sustainability-focused zero-waste shop called Natural Weigh held a ribbon cutting graced by the attendance of Prince Charles. The shop sells plant-based and organic pantry staples in reusable glass containers.
The Kind Heart Festival is a reflection of the UK’s overall acceptance and transition to the plant-based lifestyle, driven by small businesses and organic consumer demand. For updates on the vendor list and entertainment lineup, follow the Facebook page or visit the event website.