Revelation is part of a national initiative launched by Music Venue Trust to prevent the closure of hundreds of independent music venues.
Who we are
Nestled just off Ashford High Street is the revolutionary pop-up arts venue Revelation – atmospheric, intimate, quirky and based inside a working medieval church! With our exceptional acoustics, high quality sound and projection systems the amazing space at St Mary’s Church offers a home for creative talent in Ashford and a truly up close and personal experience for all who visit.
Since 2011, the venue has welcomed international musicians, legendary performers, created fantastic community experiences and incredibly, we are Ashford's ONLY dedicated arts venue. Ashford is growing with the highest rate of growth for any Kent district (three times higher than the county average), so it really needs Revelation to meet the needs of growing local audiences.
Our mission is simple - we offer high quality, up close and personal experiences for our audiences. We've been lucky and had some investment and support for our vision from St Mary’s Church, Ashford Borough Council and Arts Council England, but we rely on ticket and bar sales to keep us going.
We have a great track record of programming diverse music genres including folk, classical, indie, jazz and rock, featuring established artists such as Courtney Pine, The Unthanks, Martha Wainwright, Gaz Coombes, The Lightning Seeds, Aurora Orchestra, Tim Burgess, Toploader and The Orb. We host popular DJs such as Huey Morgan (Fun Lovin’ Criminals), Terry Hall (The Specials) and Craig Charles.
But we also featured emerging Kent talent such as the Bay Rays, Gentlemen of Few, Thomas Ashby, The Galleries and Ladybird. Throughout the year showcase regional talent at Ashford Bandstand and host a Revelation Stage at Create Festival with over 10000 audience.
We rely on our pool of 20 fantastic volunteers and interns to deliver our events alongside our core staff; they are an invaluable asset and often move on to paid roles and performances at Revelation.
Why we need your help
Our venue is one of hundreds currently at risk of closure because of the effects of Covid-19. During the early stages of the pandemic we took the difficult decision to close our doors for the first time in 9 years and we can no longer operate until restrictions are eased.
While we have managed to move some of our Spring/Summer Events into the Autumn there is still a lot of uncertainty around when restrictions will end, what that will mean for us and if we will make it that far.
As a pop-up venue in a working church there are limitations on the number of events we can host in any one season, so it will be impossible to recoup all the income that has been lost while we are closed: income we rely on to keep the organisation going. We anticipate and accept our sector will be one of the last to reopen but this will sadly put a significant amount of financial strain and pressure on our venue. To combat this, we are now part of a fabulous national initiative launched by Music Venue Trust, to prevent the closure of hundreds of independent music venues.
Craig Charles for Create Platform
How your donation will help
Your donations will be used to fill the shortfall between the small government grants we receive and our actual monthly outgoings while closed. We are committed not just to maintaining our ongoing building and office costs, but to ensuring that our staff are paid and honour current freelance and artist contracts as they need to survive too. These people are our life blood and we will continue to support them for as long as we can.
Dat Brass having an Up Close and Personal moment
If we hit our target of £7,500 everything above that amount will be donated to the Music Venue Trust GMV Crisis Fund to protect other venues just like ours, right across the country. So please help us and help Ashford to keep it's ONLY dedicated arts venue!