Photographs from Cropredy 2017 courtesy of ViceVersaFotografia

A selection of photograph from Fairport’s Cropredy Convention Festival 2017. All photos were taken by and are copyright Robbi ViceversaFotografia

AFO Conference 2017 Hot topics, guest speakers and networking opportunities galore!

AFO LogoThe Association of Festival Organisers (AFO) Conference is the place for everything festivals and events.  Over 250 delegates, both professionals and volunteers, will be gathering to discuss the hot topics affecting our industry today.  This year’s dates are 10-12 November 2017 at Ettington Chase Conference Centre, Stratford-upon-Avon. See www.festivalorganisers.org for full details and to book.

Steve Heap, General Secretary of AFO says “We are pleased to announce that BBC Breakfast’s Mike Bushell will be joining us to talk about his experiences of all kinds of festivals.”

Continue reading “AFO Conference 2017 Hot topics, guest speakers and networking opportunities galore!”

Blazing Beverley Folk Festival 2017

This year’s Beverley Folk Festival was blessed with blazing sunshine that was matched by the blistering talent on display. The temperature really soared over the weekend offering the perfect environment for relaxing with a cold beer and listening to some superb music.

Headline Act Eddi Reader (Photo by viceversarobbifotografia)

It’s been a few years since I last visited the Beverley Folk Festival. This year, with the event’s website proclaiming 2016’s event had 30% more music and events than ever before and this year’s press releases saying 2017 is going to be bigger and better than ever – I though now’s the time to pay the festival another visit.

Beverley is called a folk festival but with the very wide range of live music that was being performed and the variety of entertainment taking place, it’s now transcending the boundaries of folk music. While at the 2017 festival’s heart there was still a solid core of excellent folk music, singer/songwriters and memorable performances by some of the great ambassadors of the genre, the addition of an Americana afternoon, a steel band, poetry, choirs, brass bands and much more added refreshing diversity and expanded appeal.

One of the highlights, for me, was the incredible Kathryn Roberts & Sean Lakeman on-stage in the Big Top. They finished their set with ‘Rusalka’ a truly ethereal song about a Russian mermaid. I first heard them perform the song at the Great British Folk Festival in Skegness. I loved it then and I found it just as haunting this time around.

Someone else that I was pleased to see on the festival bill was Dan Walsh. Nominated for best musician at the BBC Folk Awards, he just has to be the best banjo player in the UK. If you haven’t seen him play – put him on your ‘must see’ list.

Dan Walsh at Beverley Folk Festival 2017
Dan Walsh (Photo by viceversarobbifotografia)

The Beverly Folk Festival has a whole mess of live music stages including not just one but two big-tops plus the Atom marquee (the venue for the Moonbeam sessions), the 1690 bar, the Attraction Room, the Westwood Room, an outdoor stage and a further music stage in the food marquee. On top of this there were open mic sessions in the Touch Above Bar which also played host to number of folk clubs from the north of England. And, as if this wasn’t enough, there was even more live music, entertainment and dance popping up all over the site such as brass bands, jugglers, buskers and Morris dancers.

Atom Marquee
The Atom Marquee Stage (Photo by viceversarobbifotografia)

For the second year, Beverly Folk Festival was offering what they called the ‘Festival Village Taster Ticket’. This gave access to the craft marquee, the traders area, food court, some of the smaller venues plus a wealth of open air entertainment and pop-up concerts. At just three pounds, this is ridiculously good value. You can pay that for a cup of coffee in some places.

Early Bird tickets for Beverley 2018 are already on sale and can be had for just £80.

Beverley’s big weekend of music and fun for all the family

Beverley Folk Festival is going to be bigger and better than ever!

The 34th annual event will be held on the 16th, 17th and 18th of June when the Beverley Racecourse will once again be transformed into a fantastic family friendly festival site.

The musicians are tuning up, the Big Tops are being erected and the volunteers are rolling up their sleeves to ensure a fabulous weekend of music, dance, comedy and surprises.

The line up on stages in the ‘Little Big Top’ and the ‘Big Top’ includes internationally and nationally acclaimed artists, check out the website for full details www.beverleyfestival.com.

Young performers will be featured in the ‘Area 2’ and ‘Westwood Sessions’ giving audiences the chance to spot tomorrows stars today.

The festival has a strong reputation for innovation and always has some surprises in store. Including late night open mic sessions, Folk Clubs, and a late night Ceilidh

This year there will be Americana afternoons on both Saturday and Sunday highlighting the increasingly popularity of this genre of music.

There will also be workshops, comedy and literature including a chance to see veteran politician Alan Johnson talking about his award winning autobiographies and his latest book.

The ‘Festival Village’ is at the heart of the festival with food stalls, real ale bars, craft marquee, children’s den and outside performances to entertain and amuse. Entrance to the ‘festival village’ including community performances and much more will be just £3 a ‘Festival Taster’ giving everyone the chance to share the fun.

Tickets to see the concerts are available via the website – https://beverleyfestival.cloudvenue.co.uk/

Full Weekend tickets, day, half day and the three main evening concerts are all available.

For more info please visit http://www.beverleyfestival.com

More Acts Announced by FolkEast as day tickets go on sale.

Slovenian cult folk band Terrafolk, not seen in the UK for a decade, are to appear at FolkEast this summer.

Currently their only UK music festival date, the maverick music ensemble will appear on the opening night of the event.

Formed by Danijel Cerne (aka Mystica) in 1999 their uniqueness saw their quick rise to fame, performing at numerous European festivals including Edinburgh Fringe and Glastonbury and clinching a BBC Radio 3 World Music Award in 2003. Offering virtuoso musicianship and offbeat humour the ‘impossible-to-pigeonhole’ line-up draw on Balkan, Gypsy, Russian and Jewish music, captivating audiences with their mix of classical, folk, prog rock, heavy metal and jazz styles.

Once described as “folk rebels with punk attitude” the quartet comprises Danijel Cerne on guitar, An Cerne on flute, Irish whistles and violin, Barja Drbovsek on violin, double bass and ukulele and Botan Cvetreznik on violin.

The three-day festival at the glorious 300-acre Suffolk estate of 16th century Glemham Hall will also feature only the third performance of ‘She Moved Through the Fair: The Legend of Margaret Barry’ after its successful debut at Celtic Connections earlier this year.

Celebrating the centenary of the birth of the feisty Irish street singer it tells Barry’s extraordinary story in music, words and theatre – from leaving home at 16 with nothing but a banjo and bicycle to her discovery by American song collector Alan Lomax.

* Hear Margaret Barry singing The Galway Shawl and The Flowers of Street Strabane. https://youtu.be/yxzSVtZekXM

Written by top music journalist Colin Irwin (also the narrator) and Irish singer Mary McPartlan it tells how she went on to appear at top concert halls in Britain and America, befriending boxers and folk stars at the same time as outraging polite society with her drinking and storytelling but ultimately gaining an indelible reputation as one of folk music’s most unique and enduring voices.

It features the music and singing of McPartlan, award-winning music producer Gerry Diver and fascinating folk artist Lisa Knapp with actors taking the roles of Margaret Barry, Alan Lomax, David Attenborough and others.

Elsewhere the quirkiness that sets FolkEast aside from other music festivals continues. The 2017 festival will see the return of Gardeners’ Cornered – FolkEast’s answer to Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Time where festivalgoers can bring their poorly plants and horticulture queries to a panel including ‘Britain’s best known exponent of melodeon and concertina’ and keen allotment holder John Spiers (ex Bellowhead). Spiers will also reprise the outstanding collaboration formed at FolkEast last year with legendary fiddler Peter Knight of Steeleye Span fame as well as performing a solo spot.

Spiers’ erstwhile Bellowhead colleague, percussionist Pete Flood, meanwhile will also be joining the Gardeners’ Cornered panel. And he will be swapping his drum sticks for binoculars as he leads festivalgoers on a nature ramble around the Glemham estate. Post Bellowhead, Pete headed to Manchester Metropolitan University to enrol on a University Certificate in Biological Recording and Species Identification course with a view to fulfilling an ambition of working in conservation. He says: “I’ve had a long term dream of working in conservation and now have thousands of hours of obsessive botanising, moss-gathering and fungus-bothering behind me!”

Continuing the green-fingered theme, a new venture this year will be Eastfolk in Bloom. FolkEast’s Becky Marshall-Potter, who runs the festival with husband John says: “We are asking stall holders to take up the floral baton. There will be an offical judging of the best dressed stall and area on the Friday afternoon. We can’t wait to see what people will come up with – this could be the most colourful FolkEast yet!”

In its sixth year, FolkEast will be packing a punch with an eclectic line up of folk and world music acts including BBC award-winning headliners Jon Boden (ex Bellowhead frontman) and Sam Kelly and The Lost Boys and recently announced Sunday headliner, the dynamic Dhol Foundation. 2017 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards nominees Nancy Kerr, Kris Drever and Dorset duo Ninebarrow are all on the programme and of course FolkEast’s irrepressible patrons The Young ‘uns.

The brilliant line-up also includes Martin Simpson, Michael Chapman, Martin Carthy and John Kirkpatrick, Lau, Simpson, Cutting and Kerr, Damien O’Kane Band , Fay Hield, The Willows, Basque band Korrontzi, Three Cane Whale, Norfolk Broads, Moirai , Irish trad folk band Beoga and top duos Will Pound & Eddy Jay,  India Electric Co and Hannah Sanders & Ben Savage.

Full line-up details here http://www.folkeast.co.uk/18356-2/

Musicport Festival announces two headline acts

This year’s 18th Musicport Festival held in the beautiful Yorkshire port of Whitby promises its usual high quality and eclectic line-up.

Confirmed to headline are two acts that have long been on the wish list of the festival organisers, the award winning collective Afro Celt Sound System & poet Benjamin Zephaniah with his dub reggae band The Revolutionary Minds.

Afro Celt Sound System. 

Formed by Grammy-nominated musician and record producer Simon Emmerson, Afro Celt Sound System are a European and African based collective who’ve been a ground-breaking force in music ever since they started.

With sales now topping one and a half million albums and two Grammy nominations to date, Afro Celt Sound System celebrated their 20th Anniversary with a stunning new album, ‘The Source’ released in April 2016 on ECC Records described as a “colossus of an album” by fRoots.

‘The Source’ is undoubtedly their most ambitious album yet and one that takes their cross-cultural collaboration and acclaimed live performances to another level. Afro Celt Sound System is a live music spectacle featuring a host of outstanding musicians, every bit as energetic and captivating as the album. They have announced a huge tour for November 2017 with special guests label mates and friends The Dhol Foundation who will themselves release a brand new studio album ‘Basant’ later in the year.

Dr Benjamin Obadiah Iqbal Zephaniah, born and raised in Handsworth Birmingham, was one of the pioneers of the performance poetry scene in Britain, part of the ‘school’ known as the ‘Dub Poets’; who worked alongside reggae music to bring awareness of issues to the wider community.

He has written poetry books for children, adults, and novels for teenagers.

He is also an actor and television presenter, but whatever he does, wherever he goes, his message is one of unity, peace, and expression through creativity.

Much travelled (Over a 22-day period in 1991 he performed on every continent on this planet) he is the only living poet to have performed in North Korea, and he holds 16 honorary doctorates. As well as being a passionate activist he is a visiting professor at De Montfort University, and Professor of Poetry and Creative Writing at Brunel University.

As well as writing plays for stage, radio, and television, he has managed to keep up a music career that has lasted three decades.

He will be performing at Musicport with his new dub reggae band The Revolutionary Minds.

Most of his own musical recordings fall into the Reggae or Dub Poetry category and he was the first person to record with the Wailers after the death of Bob Marley in a musical tribute to Nelson Mandela. Free South Africa.

With so many political issues to the fore he is bound to have a lot of new material to present in October.

Musicport Festival, held in one indoor venue overlooking the North Sea with 6 stages (and a comedy bus), is widely regarded as a great way to end the festival season and coincides with the October half term for many. With indoor camping as an option, a festival bazaar in the main hall and international food vans it has the outdoor festival vibe but protected from the elements and with lots of activities to participate in as well as acts to see.

Other acts confirmed to perform at Musicport 2017 include :

Kefaya , Maia Barouh (Japan/France)  Tcha Limberger’s Kalotaszeg Trio (Hungary)  Hardeep  Singh Kohli, Andy Kershaw,  Hope & Social , Rory McLeod & Familiar Strangers,  “Orchestra Of Samples” with Addictive TV,  Omar Puente’s Cuban Sextet ,  Kathakali Theatre Co. (India) Maya Youssef Trio (Syria) , Amaraterra (Italy /UK), Himmerland (Denmark) . Fistful Of Spookies , Jamie Smith’s Mabon (Wales}, O’Hooley & Tidow,  Ribbon Road,  Bollywood Jazz Project (UK/India). Grace Petrie,  Joanne Harris  & the Storytime Band , The Bar-Steward Sons of Val Doonican, Lightgarden with more still TBC.

In addition to the main festival the festival goes on tour to the surrounding villages on the Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday following the main event. This was a successful innovation in 2016 and makes staying around for a few days even more of an option for visitors as well as extending opportunities for local audiences and for the performers.

Full weekend tickets are currently discounted and priced at £100.

(Day/session tickets will not be available until August)

Tel: 01947 603475 to book or visit; www.musicportfestival.com 

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/musicport-festival-17-tickets-339

The Association of Festival Organisers launches AFO Conference 2017

The Association of Festival Organisers (AFO) invites anyone working in the festival and events industry, either as a professional or volunteer, to join them for the 31st AFO Conference on 10-12 November 2017 at Ettington Chase Conference Centre, Stratford-upon-Avon.

Steve Heap, General Secretary of AFO says “We are excited to launch AFO Conference 2017.  We have some great speakers and sessions in the pipeline.  Delegates can expect regular Conference highlights such as the popular round table discussions and the famous Colin Irwin Interview, whose past interviewees have included Andy Kershaw, Tom Robinson, Oysterband’s John Jones and Ian Telfer amongst others.  This year’s interview promises to be just as insightful and entertaining.  Keep an eye on our website www.festivalorganisers.org for details.”

The Conference agenda will also include hot topics, key note speakers and more intimate breakout sessions.

AFO Conference is open to all.  Steve says, “Whether you have been in the festival and event business for years or are just starting out, AFO Conference is an invaluable opportunity to share ideas, support each other and learn something new.”

Bob Rushton from Derby Live summed up the inclusive feel to AFO Conference “Brain buzzing from AFO Conference.  Some great sessions, chats, music, links and all round sense of “all being in it together”!”

Since its formation in 1986, when a small group of like-minded festival organisers got together to chat and share ideas, AFO Conference has grown into a key date in the festival and events calendar, now attracting over 250 delegates.

Chris Johnson, of Shambala Festival and Kambe Events says “AFO Conference has real integrity as an industry meeting and gathering”.

From Friday evening to late lunch on Sunday, the session rooms and stages will be buzzing with headline speakers, presentations, discussions, ‘how to do that’ sessions, panel debates and that all important time for networking.

The Trade & Agent Market is in the heart of the networking space offering agents and suppliers the perfect opportunity to advertise their wares and generate new business.  Two Showcase concerts will feature the best up and coming artists on the festival scene, a chance for festival programmers to snap up these great acts and include them in their 2018 festival bill.

Pip Martin, from the agency Midnight Mango praised AFO Conference as “The most useful trade event I have attended all year.  Focused, informative, well organised and enjoyable, what more can you ask for?”

Delegate Passes are now on sale at the early bird rate of £110 for AFO members, £135 for non-members (until 30 September 2017).  Trade Stands are £300 for AFO members and £500 for non-members.  Book via the AFO website at www.festivalorganisers.org

Cambridge Folk Festival announces new names including Lisa Hannigan and Martin Simpson

Cambridge Folk Festival is delighted to reveal exciting new additions to this year’s bill, including Lisa Hannigan and Martin Simpson. They join a line-up that brings together up and coming artists and established folk legends in the grounds of Cherry Hinton Hall.

Lisa Hannigan
Lisa Hannigan

First capturing attention through her work with Damien Rice, Mercury Award nominated Irish singer-songwriter Lisa Hannigan’s subsequent solo albums have attracted much critical praise. She has continued to collaborate with a diverse range of artists as well as contributing to soundtracks for the TV series ‘Fargo’ and the Oscar-winning score for ‘Gravity’.

Universally acclaimed as one of the world’s finest guitarists, singer-songwriter Martin Simpson is equally at home playing English traditional folk, American folk and blues and his own compositions. Forty years of acclaimed solo releases, a linchpin in seminal collaborations like the Full English and The Elizabethan Sessions and the most nominated musician in the history of the BBC Folk Awards, Martin is a true master of his art. Martin is one of the artists that Jon Boden has programmed as part of his Guest Curation.

Also joining the diverse line-up are: Grammy Award winning African-American singer-songwriter Fantastic Negrito; newly-formed international music ensemble Bokante; Mali’s Tamikrest, mixing the Tuareg musical tradition with indie rock; stunning, double UK Americana Award-winning duo Lewis & Leigh; vibrant Irish traditional band Moxie; hotly-tipped South London singer-songwriter Jake Isaac; traditional band Ho-ro, hailing from the Scottish Highlands and Islands; folk-soul singer songwriter River Matthews; Anglo-Irish girl power bluegrass band, Midnight Skyracer; young folk singer from Wiltshire, Rosie Hood; Indian playback singer, songwriter and guitarist Nikhil D’Souza and ceilidh band Feis Rois.

These new names join previously announced Jake Bugg (acoustic), Liv On: OliviaNewton-John, Beth Nielsen-Chapman and Amy Sky, Indigo Girls, Shirley Collins, Loudon Wainwright III, Ward Thomas, Oysterband, Lau, featuring Kris Drever, Martin Green and Aidan O’Rourke (Saturday) and Guest Curator Jon Boden.  More details, including the full programme of Jon Boden’s Guest Curatorship and Den Artists to be announced soon.

For further artist information and daily line-ups, please see www.cambridgefolkfestival.co.uk

Tickets are on sale:

Full Festival ticket: £167
Day tickets: £27.50 (Thu), £59.50 (Fri), £70 (Sun). Saturday Day Tickets Sold Out.

Limited availability on Full Festival and Sunday tickets – book now to avoid disappointment.

Camping at Cherry Hinton Hall and Coldham’s Common is available. Concession tickets (disabled access and carer, Under 21, Cambridge City Resident) are available. Please see the website for more information and full ticket prices: www.cambridgefolkfestival.co.uk

Cambridge Folk Festival is held over four days in the picturesque grounds of Cherry Hinton Hall. Celebrated for its relaxed atmosphere, excellent facilities and diverse programme, the Festival brings together the best of folk in its broadest sense, from international stars to breakthrough new artists and special one-off performances, talks and workshops across several stages.

Cambridge Folk Festival is promoted by Cambridge Live with support from Cambridge City Council.

Lincoln Folk, Roots & World Music Festival returns to Lincoln Drill Hall on 10th June 2017

Solid Entertainments is delighted to announce that Lincoln Folk, Roots & World Music Festival will be returning to Lincoln Drill Hall on Saturday 10th June 2017

Showcasing the quality of live music in the UK; with Martin & Eliza Carthy headlining and five other very special acts in the line-up, this will undoubtedly be another great festival and an occasion not to miss!

For more than 40 years Martin Carthy has been one of folk music’s greatest innovators, one of its best loved, most enthusiastic and, at times, most quietly controversial of figures. His skill, stage presence and natural charm have won him many admirers, not only from within the folk scene, but also far beyond it. Trailblazing musical partnerships with, amongst others, Steeleye Span, Dave Swarbrick and his award-winning wife (Norma Waterson) and daughter Eliza Carthy have resulted in more than 40 albums, but Martin has only recorded 10 solo albums, of which the much anticipated Waiting for Angels (Topic TSCD527) was the latest. In the folk clubs (which he continues to champion), on the concert stage or making TV appearances (he was the subject of the acclaimed `Originals’ music documentary strand on BBC 2) – there are few roles that Martin Carthy hasn’t played.

Martin is a ballad singer, a ground-breaking acoustic and electric-guitarist and an authoritative interpreter of newly composed material. He always prefers to follow an insatiable musical curiosity rather than cash in on his unrivalled position. Perhaps, most significant of all, are his settings of traditional songs with guitar, which have influenced a generation of artists, including Bob Dylan and Paul Simon, on both sides of the Atlantic.

Eliza Carthy is undoubtedly one of the most impressive and engaging performers of her generation. Twice nominated for the Mercury Prize and winner of innumerable other accolades over a 20 year career, Eliza has performed and recorded with a diverse array of artists including, Paul Weller, Rufus and Martha Wainwright, Patrick Wolf and Bob Neuwirth. More than most, Eliza Carthy has revitalised folk music and captured the most hardened of dissenters with intelligent, charismatic and boundary-crossing performance.

Eliza grew up immersed in the world of traditional music. She still divides her time between touring and recording with her legendary parents, Martin Carthy and Norma Waterson as well as engaging in numerous pioneering solo and band projects, including work with Pere Ubu and Melanie Challenger, an artist in residence in Antarctica. In what has become something of a parallel career, Eliza has co-presented the BBC Radio 3 World Music Awards, been a regular guest-presenter on the BBC Radio 2 Mark Radcliffe Show and has made many appearances on BBC TVs ‘Later with Jools’. In her own right, Eliza has been the subject of an hour long ITV documentary (‘Heaven & Earth’) and ‘My Music’ on Channel 5. Comedian and writer Stewart Lee describes Eliza as “Not the Messiah, but a very naughty girl”.

The full line-up comprises of:

· Martin & Eliza Carthy – the good Doctor Martin Carthy and his twice Mercury nominated daughter Eliza Carthy, join forces to perform songs from their first duo album ever!

· Michael Chapman – born in Leeds, he first became known on the London and Cornish folk circuits in 1966 and is known as one of the UK’s best finger picking style guitar players!

· Chris Sherburn, Denny Bartley, Emily Sanders – Chris and Denny bring their unique sound and Emily’s fiddle playing and singing adds a new depth to what will surely be a memorable set!

· Louise Jordan – fuelled by an untamed spirit, her music is authentic and timeless, underpinned by an unassuming natural elegance that places simple honesty alongside bold imagination!

· Mia And The Moon – combining early folk festival influences with the urban, contemporary styles of today, the two sisters distinctive, gospel sound, reaches out to people of all ages!

· Salutation – a group of young people from Lincolnshire who play traditional folk music, blending beautiful harmonic singing with imaginative instrumentation and arrangements!

No need to worry about searching for food and drinks on the day either, there will be a range of alcoholic/non-alcoholic beverages, real ales available and a varied menu that should meet everyone’s taste!

There is no doubt that this will be a great days entertainment and memorable day in Lincolnshire.

Lincoln Folk, Roots & World Music Festival 2 on Saturday 10th June

The festival will take place at
Lincoln Drill Hall, Free School Lane, Lincoln, Lincolnshire LN2 1EY

Early Bird Tickets are only £22 (for a limited period) and to book, please call 01472 349 222 or go online at http://www.lincolnfolkfestival.co.uk/tickets.html

To find out more about the line up and festival in general, please visit http://www.lincolnfolkfestival.co.uk/index.html

More headliners unveiled for Shrewsbury Folk Festival 2017

An exclusive performance that will reunite three of the UK’s finest singer songwriters in their first appearance together in more than 13 years has been announced as one of the closing acts of this year’s Shrewsbury Folk Festival.

Tom Robinson (2,4,6,8 Motorway, War Baby, and a BBC 6 Music DJ), Steve Knightley (Show of Hands) and Martyn Joseph, will reform as the Faith, Folk and Anarchy trio that will be the final act on the festival’s main stage on August Bank Holiday Monday.

The group, which toured and recorded an album in 2002, haven’t performed together since a reunion show in 2004. Other new headliners that have been confirmed include Squeeze co-founder Chris Difford, Irish Music Award winning band Cara, and Jamie Smith’s Mabon.

Performers already confirmed include Loudon Wainwright III, Eric Bibb, former Bellowhead frontman Jon Boden, The Unthanks, Oysterband, The Young’uns, Le Vent Du Nord and Seth Lakeman, Andy Fairweather Low & the Low Riders featuring the Hi Riders Soul Review, Jim Moray’s Upcetera Ensemble, Sarah Jarosz, John Kirkpatrick, Skipinnish, Sam Carter, Joe Broughton’s Conservatoire Folk Ensemble, The Wilsons, The East Pointers, Sam Kelly and the Lost Boys, Coven (Lady Maisery, O’Hooley & Tidow, and Grace Petrie), Mick Ryan and Paul Downes, The Fitzgeralds, Daphne’s Flight, Chris While and Julie Matthews, Maz O’Connor, Alma, Greg Russell and Ciaran Algar, The Rheingans Sisters, Greg Russell (solo), Ragged Union, Moirai, Jimmy Aldridge & Sid Goldsmith, Mark Tchanz,  Chris Quinn, Jamie Huddlestone, National Youth Folk Ensemble, Na-Mara, Wood, Wire and Words, and the Roaring Trowmen.

The event will also host the only 2017 festival appearance of Peter Bellamy’s groundbreaking folk opera The Transports featuring The Young’uns, Faustus, Nancy Kerr, Matthew Crampton, Greg Russell and Rachael McShane. Dance bands include Glorystrokes, Jabadaw, Steamchicken, Boldwood, Lasair and Contrasaurus.

This year’s festival runs from August 25 to 28 at the West Mid Showground in Berwick Road, Shrewsbury, and ticket sales are strong, with the tier 2 prices selling fast.

Festival Director Alan Surtees said: “We are delighted to have been able to entice Tom, Steve and Martyn back together for this one-off reunion – it’ll be the only chance anyone has to see them together in this format.With the current climate and state of the world it will be a timely reminder of the important role music plays in our social and political lives as well as being a cracking afternoon of entertainment. We’re very lucky to have them at our festival.”

Alan said ticket sales for the August festival are already surging ahead of last year’s figures.

“2016 was another sell out festival and it looks like people are booking early to make sure they don’t want to miss out. The line up is shaping up to make it another phenomenal year so we’ve advise anyone thinking of coming along to make sure they buy their tickets as soon as possible.”

The festival has four music stages, a dance tent and runs more than 100 workshops and dedicated children and youth programmes. There is onsite camping, a craft fair, real ale, wine and cocktail bars, and a food village.

Weekend, camping and day tickets can be booked through www.shrewsburyfolkfestival.co.uk or direct at www.gigantic.com/shrewsbury-folk-festival-tickets.