Stompin’ on the Quomps is a music festival situated in the picturesque surroundings of Christchurch Quay, Dorset.
In the early 1990′s the Council Arts Officer, the late Suzette Sulley, conceived the idea of a community concert. With the involvement of the leader of the local big band Adrian Dwyer, the concept of hosting a community concert on Christchurch Band stand was born.
In its formative years the event was part of Christchurch Regatta, sponsored by The Regent Centre, the audience comprising of a handful of people, and a dog . . . and dogs don’t like jazz.
But very rapidly the event outgrew the regatta, becoming what is today one of the largest events of its kind on the South Coast of England.
2006 – Small, but perfectly formed
In 2006 a small but dedicated committee took over the responsibility for running the event from the Regent Centre and whilst remaining true to the original concept, have expanded the event year on year.
2007 – 5 Quality Bands spanning almost the entire genre of Jazz
By 2007 the number of bands performing was increased to five, and the event extended from mid-day through to 10pm, the event attracting 4-5,000 people.
2009 – A Community Interest
By 2009 what had started out as a community concert had truly come of age, and in June 2009 Stompin’ became one of the first not-for-profit entities to be registered with Companies House as a Community Interest Company – Stompin’ on the Quomps Community Interest Company number 06917549
2010 – Stompin’ becomes an ‘International Music Festival’
In 2010 we welcome our first ‘international’ band, the rather oddly-named Bazar Bizzare, a Jazz, Soul, Funk band from Holland.
2010 also welcomed Jools Holland singer Louise Clare Marshall.
2010 – Stompin’ sponsors a workshop of music educators to investigate ways of getting more young people interested in playing Jazz.
2011 – Stompin’ sponsors the first workshop.
In conjunction with the CODA music trust, Stompin’ is sponsoring the first music workshop designed to getting more young people interested in Jazz. Leading the workshop will be the acclaimed singer Louise Clare Marshall.
2012 – No one singing (in the rain)
Shortly after it was announced that London had won the Olympics, Stompin’ on the Quomps decided to bring forward the date of the 2012 event. What the organisers could not have foreseen was the wettest spring and summer on record. With a site that was still waterlogged the organisers made the difficult decision to postpone the event to 15th September, by which time the weather gods had exacted their vengeance on the Country and it turned out to be a perfect day.
Stompin’ on the Quomps remains a ‘no entry fee’ event.
Costing over £15,000 to host, it is financed through sponsorship, advertising and pitch-fees from traders. Donations from the audience makes up one of the largest sources of income.
‘its your donation that keeps this event alive’
Many local businesses and organisations, including Christchurch Council, provide goods or services ‘in kind’, costs that would otherwise triple the cost of running the event.
Stompin’ on the Quomps is entirely reliant on a very small group of volunteers, the event taking almost 1,000 volunteer man-hours to organise. It is their exceptionally hard work and dedication that brings Borough residents and visitors into the Town, boosting the local economy, creating an event that Christchurch residents have said is one of the most enjoyable in the calendar.
Stompin’ on the Quomps, putting a smile on the faces of 5,000 people, irrespective of age, ability, creed or wealth.