Stockport Folk Festival four-day spectacular

Stockport Old Town Folk Festival 2015
Stockport Old Town Folk Festival 2015

The second annual Stockport Old Town Folk Festival takes place at the end of the month over the Bank Holiday weekend.

The Stockport Old Town Folk Festival runs in the town centre from Thursday, April 28, to Sunday, May 1, and is supported by Arts Council England, Robinsons Brewery and the Portas Pilot Delivery Group.

Last year, the four-day event attracted thousands of people to Stockport Market and the surrounding Old Town, and the organisers Seven Miles Out hope that this year’s lively programme of traditional and contemporary folk music, colourful morris dancing and interactive street performance will attract even more new visitors to the area.

The Folk Festival brings together all ages of the community for music and dance performance including over one 100 primary school children taking part in the traditional dance display on Thursday and over 150 morris dancers on the Sunday.

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Foodie Friday, sponsored by Stockport’s biggest commercial landlord Orbit Developments, regularly attracts hundreds of people to the Market Square for street food, drink and entertainment.

This month’s event on Friday, April 29, will have a folk theme with live performances from singer-songwriter Liam McClair, Chloe Jones, The Hayes Sisters and Dr Butler’s Hatstand Medicine Band.

On Saturday, April 30, there’s an opportunity to learn how to morris dance at free workshop sessions provided by members of Manchester Morris from 11am to 4pm in St Mary’s Church.

Everyone is welcome to take part and are also invited to perform in the Morris Dance Spectacular the following day.

Seven Miles Out welcomes the best in contemporary folk music from singer-songwriter Dave Fidler, Mano McLaughlin and The Travelling Band’s Jo Dudderidge, Stockport gypsy folk band Lazlo Baby and acclaimed Irish music expert Angela Durcan with her young folk musicians.

The May Day event on Sunday, May 1, promises even more spectacle as once again the organisers team up with Heatons-based artist Sophie Terrell, who created the popular golden dragon, silver stag and copper unicorn ‘gigante’ sculptures for last year’s festival.

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Sophie is collaborating with The Circus House to deliver the ‘Market Mayhem’ street performances inspired by the rites of Spring where you can expect to see a giant Green Man, dancing cows and unicycling geese.

At 11am there will be a Folk Parade of all the performers from the Market Square into Merseyway and throughout the day there will be a wealth of free family entertainment including arts and crafts workshops, village fete games, traditional Punch & Judy and the storytelling laureate Taffy Thomas telling his tales in Seven Miles Out.

You can take part in a free ukulele workshop hosted by Stockport Ukulele Players and watch Stockport’s finest young folk dancers from the world-class Fosbrooks folk group perform in the Market Square at 2pm.

For the final fling of the Festival, don’t miss high octane performances from Lazlo Baby and The Gally Canters in Seven Miles Out from 5pm.

For more information on all the individual events of this year’s Folk Festival visit their website.