Kate Winslet who with co-star Leonardo DiCaprio ensured that James Cameron’s epic 1997 romance Titanic was one of the greatest films of all time made her latest appearance in far more modest surroundings - the council chamber in Chichester.
An evening of words and music celebrated the beauty of the Sussex and Hampshire landscape in front of a capacity audience.
Novelist and playwright Kate Mosse, brought together the stellar company of talented performers – actors, musicians, writers and singers - all with local connections.
Those taking part also included Timothy Watson, Felix Mosse, Imogen Stubbs, Paula Tinker, Jane Pegler, Tony Pegler, Alice O’Hanlon, Gareth Williams, the community choir OK Chorale, directed by Music Director John Gleadall, and readings from local authors Isabel Ashdown and Suzie Wilde.
Guest speakers featured Chairman of the Chichester Harbour Trust, John Nelson, and the Founder of SOSCA – Save Our South Coast Alliance – Libby Alexander. The show was produced by Greg Mosse and Kate Mosse was MC.
Kate Mosse said: “I am incredibly grateful to all the wonderful performers who gave up their time to take part in this celebration of our beautiful, but delicate and beleaguered environment.
“The fact the evening sold out so quickly is testament to how many people are worried for – and care about protecting – the world around us and want to see changes in the future.”
The evening was held in association with SOSCA to draw attention to the damage being caused by the huge number of developments creating eradication through constant pollution of our very special fragile landscape, a landscape that has inspired many writers past and present – including Blake, Kipling, Chesterton, Stella Gibbons, Charlotte Smith and composers such as Ralph Vaughan Williams and Cecil Sharp.
Libby Alexander said: “The situation is now so bad that what is at stake is no less than the very survival of our entire Chichester Coastal Plain.
“We urgently need everyone to realise that unless we act now, and demand now an end to this wanton destruction, there will be nothing left for future generations. As if to justify our concerns, we have just had international confirmation that our Chichester Coastal Plain is unique. At COP26 next month, they will be a film screening illustrating the huge importance Wetlands are to the revival of our planet: they chose four countries to highlight - Cayman Isles, China, South Korea and, for the UK, Medmerry in West Sussex.”
Mrs Alexander urged everyone to write to their local councillors and MPs to raise their concerns and to support SOSCA’s campaigning to prevent further damage to local communities and wildlife.
For more details about SOSCA, please visit www.sosca.org.uk