|Drayton Court Hotel|
A new one-day jazz festival, the Jazz in the Garden Festival at the Drayton Court Hotel is announced for August 21st. Admission will be free.
The large, 1894 neo-Gothic hotel, known locally as ‘Dracula’s Castle’ went through a month-long refurbishment earlier this year. It is run by Fullers the brewers. It has a large quantity of public rooms, which make it feel like the Tardis once you are inside. It also has a huge beer garden, where the festival will be held if the weather is fine, with plenty of options to move inside if it isn’t. One of the hotel’s claims to fame is that Vietnamese leader Ho Chi Minh is alleged to have worked in the hotel.
The background is the change of organizer of the main Ealing Jazz Festival imposed by the Council after many years. Several bands from the Ealing community stayed away from the festival in Walpole Park, and some of them will be at the new Festival. We have been asked to reproduce this quote from Dick Esmond, who programmed and compered the Ealing Jazz Festival for over 30 years, which explains the background very clearly:
“Having witnessed the Council’s wilful destruction of a highly successful jazz festival established for 30 years, we are delighted to have secured the funding and support for a new jazz event which takes us back to the values we lost under Council control: namely, locally led bands, a focus on popular and accessible jazz, and free admission. It is not long since Ealing Jazz Festival was an eight day event, funded by major sponsors and free to the public. This is the first step back to what we always aimed for – a community based jazz festival that Ealing can be proud of.”
The press release continues: “The new festival has been organised at short notice and will take place on Sunday 21st August at the Drayton Court Hotel in Ealing. While just for one day in 2016, plans are afoot to expand it to a three day event from 2017.”
The inaugural festival will run from 12pm to 8pm on Sunday 21st August and will feature at least five bands :
. Andrew Butcher and Butchers Brew
· Winston Morson’s Off the Cuff
· Liz Fletcher and Marc Parnell Collaboration
· Ken McCarthy’s Jazz Friends
· Dick Esmond’s Sound of 7