News - Tunbridge Wells Puppetry Festival

Joey from War Horse to star in first Kent Puppetry Festival

Joey, the life size puppet horse and star of the National Theatre's internationally renowned production of War Horse, will open a unique puppetry festival coming to Kent this autumn. Joey will be travelling from his New London Theatre home to launch the first Tunbridge Wells Puppetry festival when it opens at 10am on The Pantiles in the town centre on Saturday 10th October.

Full day of puppetry fun and discovery for everyone

Offering a full day of puppetry fun and discovery where all ages can come together to enjoy the work of celebrated artists from across the UK and Europe, Joey's appearance will kick-­‐start festival proceedings and give visitors a rare glimpse into the time, effort and expertise that goes into making and maintaining the puppet at the heart of the hit stage show.

Joey from Warhorse (Handspring Puppet Company)

Visitors can enjoy free outdoor performances throughout the day on The Pantiles including traditional Punch & Judy and other street art performances.

In a special commission for the festival and in association with Tunbridge Wells Museum, contemporary puppetry will also be used to celebrate the lives and work of Tunbridge Wells printer Jasper Strange and Frant tailor George Smart.

The festival is the collaboration of Tunbridge Wells residents Linda Lewis and Bethan Tomlinson from Strangeface Theatre Company. The two professional theatre and puppetry producers have both dreamed of bringing the art form to their hometown for years.

"Puppet theatre is often the preserve of bigger festivals such as the Edinburgh Fringe so we're really looking forward to bringing it more into the mainstream and giving local people the chance to experience what these fantastic artists have to offer."

For more information, a full list of performances and to book tickets go to

7th October 2015