Laying down some roots for a new music festival

Red Hippo are scheduled to appear
Red Hippo are scheduled to appear

Hebden Bridge will have a new music festival in 2015.

After the demise of The Blues Festival and Folk Roots weekend a small group of musicians and others have decided it is time for a festival to celebrate the great range of music in the Calder Valley.

Hebden Bridge based Red Hippo, recognisable to many because of Daz Jones’ sousaphone, have already agreed to perform. Also coming will be Plumhall, featuring Michelle Plum, formerly of Chumbawamba, and Nick B Hall. The Hill Millies will be organising the folk dance element of the festival.

“We’ll be announcing others as our plan takes shape. We think this is a valley full of creativity which needs to be highlighted and celebrated,” said Elly O’Grady, one of the organisers who is part of a folk duo with Sean Pattison, another one of the organisers.

Several local pub venues have already agreed to be involved including The White Swan, The Crown, Old Gate, Stubbing Wharf and the Lamppost cafe. A larger venue will be sought for “main stage” events and discussions are in progress with the Real Cider Company about sponsorship.

The Hebden Roots festival is planned to take place on the second bank holiday weekend in May, featuring many of the local musicians to be found on the open mic circuit and others who play further afield, with a wide range of musical genres. It is partly inspired by the World on Your Doorstep festivals of 2007/8 at which all the performers were from a 25-mile radius of the town.

“It is early days yet and we have to arrange venues and we’ll we have to raise money and what have you,” added Elly. “But this is the Calder Valley where things get done. We have several people who’ve organised festivals before and we have a lot of grit and determination to make this work.”

Other venues and potential sponsors should contact Dave Boardman on if they are interested in becoming involved.