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PLEASE NOTE Due to necessary road improvements vehicle access to the Tower is prohibited for eight weeks. Pedestrian access is possible via the sea wall path. We apologise for any inconvience caused.

19 June 2017



Thursday 17 May - Sunday 9 July

See the winning photographs from the #InstaEssex photography competition. Photographers (amateurs and professionals) submitted images to the competition, sharing their ideas of what Essex culture means to them.

There will also be an exhibition by one of the InstaEssex winners, photographer Matthew Mallett. His landscape imagery of Tendring, often shot in the golden hours around sunrise and sunset. Living on the Essex Coast in England allows Matthew to exploit the natural beauty of the coastline and the ever changing looks provided by the prevailing weather conditions.

Matthew entered Fun in the Sun on Clacton Beach as Clacton is part of Essex’s ‘sunshine coast’ and this image depicts everything that is great about Clacton; hot sunny weather, people having fun, blue skies and the sight of the Red Arrows, a regular August visitor to Clacton.


Black Sandals


Black Sandal Writers

Saturday 29 July, 2pm

Black Sandal Writers will be giving readings to help any insomniac.

Black Sandal was founded in 2009 to promote unknown writing of prose and poetry in English and translations of other literature. There is work from Hungarian, Finnish, Swedish, Czech, German, Spanish, Italian and Galician. It has published translations of the great Czech poet from Moravia, Jan Skácel.



Creative Net

Free workshops on the first Wednesday of every month.

Everybody welcome! Materials, coffee, biscuits and great creative conversations provided. 

Wednesday 5 July, 11am-1pm An exploration of Fluidic Acrylics to create a surprising and unpredictable explosion of colour onto the canvas.


Wednesday 2 August, 11am-1pm Create jewellery from found objects with Meg and Amy from Colchester S&B Creative.


Wednesday 6 September, 11am-1pm Come and spend some time on the beach with Alan Hockett making Anothotype prints using plant matter. We will prepare the paper prior to selecting objects that we can to create a print.


Wednesday 4 October, 11am-1pm Popular ceramic painting returns! This session must be booked in advance to avoid disappointment.


Wednesday 1 November, 11am-1pm Learn how to create your own ‘hot glue gun printmaking motifs’ to use with textile spraypaint and ‘print’ a decorative textile panel with artist Valerie Osment.

Wednesday 6 December, 11am-1pm Get into the festive spirit by making some Christmas decorations with us. Mince pies provided! 


EdgelandsPeripheral Edgelands

Thursday 13 July - Sunday 10 September

Alan Hockett explores the edges of habitation of the Essex Landscape. These areas have multiple uses from out of town shopping to industrial sites to wasteland, but once the shops close, factories stop work, they become a stage for street racing, or crusing for teenagers. Desire paths created by urban landscaping not fitting the actual journey of the people that use it, creating a discourse between the design and its actual use.



Camera Obscure

Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 August, 11am-3pm

The reading room on the roof of the Tower will become a camera obscure for the weekend, come and see what it is like to be inside a camera, understand how the renaissance painters discovered perspective and how Fox Talbot created photography. 

There will be Artist Alan Hockett and Photographer Chris Matthews to help you understand how the obscure works.

(photograph by Chris Matthews)




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