David Mossman


It is with great sadness that we pass on the news that David Mossman, founder of the legendary Vortex Jazz Club and Margate’s

original ‘Big Sky Jazz Festival’, has recently passed away.


David was the driving force behind Margate Jazz Festival for nine years (2005 - 2013); and he worked tirelessly to bring world class musicians to our town. Through the Festival and through the year-round programming of music at the Harbour Cafe Bar, run by his wife Lesley, he threw a spotlight on Margate’s remarkable pool of local talent.


David’s passion for jazz music was infectious and his love of jazz musicians was reciprocated. His little black book (which it was) included some of the biggest names in the industry and he had a seemingly unparalleled gift for persuading them to perform here in Margate. Memorable gigs, made possible by David, include Festival fund-raisers by Jamie Cullum and Nigel Kennedy at Margate

Winter Gardens followed by after-shows at the Harbour Cafe. And he loved to perform himself, as a long-time member and trustee of

the Ramsgate Operatic Society. 


David was a true character and one treasured in Margate. He was funny, warm, passionate and tireless in his support of live music.

He remains a source of inspiration to all of us who now serve on the committee of Margate Jazz Festival as we seek to contribute, in

our own small way, to his outstanding legacy.