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GUEST,Chris Murray Great British Folk Festival-going ahead? (36) RE: Great British Folk Festival-going ahead? 07 Dec 10


We drove up on the Friday from Staffordshire. Surprisingly, all of the main roads were clear, even in Lincolnshire. It was cold but the accommodation was warm. One of the venues (Reds) was cold. My husband asked one of the bar staff about it and she said that they don't have any heating in that venue because most of the events that they hold involve dancing and people generate their own heat. She told my husband "You lot are half dead", which would explain why it was cold!

We thought it was a fab event. The Strawbs were there and so was Donovan who, after a shaky start, was brilliant. He sung every song that he's ever written and we all joined in. Technically, he was a bit rusty but that didn't matter.

I saw Kate Rusby's first set and she was as good as ever. Gordon Giltrap was bloody wonderful. I enjoyed so much more: Rod Clemence, Hunter Muskett, Shinjig, Richard Digance (still singing that song about sherbert lemons.

I know this will make me unpopular but, speaking as an old fart, one of the best things was the fact that there were no children. I used to take my daughter to festivals and I know that most festivals do accommodate children - in fact this is the only one I've ever come across that didn't. It was far too cold for children and it is pleasant to enjoy uninterupted adult company. Maybe those people who want to take their children to festivals could choose from one of the hundreds that are available.

The only down side was that neither Stackridge or the Unthanks made it and they were two of the bands that we really wanted to see.

There are lots of folk festivals, special events and concerts held in the south of England. I'm always complaining about the number of concerts that are held in London, which is difficult for me to get to. Bognor would be even more difficult. Perhaps Butlins could be persuaded to run 2 parallel festivals, like the V festivals.

Not sure why it was called the BRITISH folk festival - very few Irish, Scottish or Welsh performers.

All in all, a brilliant weekend away!


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